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Economy and Business


Lawsuit questions Ohio company's chicken-treatment labels
The complaint says Cincinnati-based Kroger’s “Simple Truth” chicken is not raised as advertised
Story by LEWIS WALLACE


 
In The Region:
A California-based lawsuit against Kroger could become a class-action including shoppers in Ohio. As Lewis Wallace reports from Ohio Public Radio station WYSO, the dispute is over truth in packaging—for Kroger’s line of chicken products known as Simple Truth chicken.
Lawsuit questions Ohio company's chicken-treatment labels

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“Simple Truth” is on Kroger shelves in green-themed packaging that says the chicken is cage-free and treated humanely. Lisa Winebarger with Compassion Over Killing is one of the lawyers for the plaintiff.

“We believe this lawsuit will reveal that ordinary consumers do not consider Kroger’s actual chicken treatment practices to be consistent with its humane claims.”

Cage-free is the first issue that’s not so simple. The chickens, which are raised by Perdue farms in Kentucky, are cage-free...because they’re kept indoors in crowded warehouses...like almost all chickens raised for meat. Keith Dailey is a spokesman for Kroger.

“This complaint falsely asserts there’s no difference between the practices used by our supplier, which is Perdue, and the standard practices used throughout the industry.”

For example, he says the Simple Truth chickens are better-monitored than most. Still, there’s not a clear standard to evaluate whether this chicken is more humanely-raised than the next, less-expensive cut of meat on the shelf. If a judge approves a class action against Cincinnati-based Kroger, Ohio shoppers could become eligible to join.
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