Walmart Sued In Class Action For Selling Bogus Herbal Supplements

02/05/2015 | Class Actions/Mass Torts

Today the Hans Poppe of the Poppe Law Firm and Ron Johnson of Schachter, Hendy & Johnson filed what is believed to be the first class action lawsuit following the New York Attorney General's release of information documenting the widespread practice of selling store brand herbal supplements which contained little to no herbs and, instead, contained fillers such as rice, pine, mustard, grass, and other non-beneficial material.  Some of the materials could be hazardous to people with certain food allergies.  Retailers, like Walmart, GNC, Target, and Walgreens have been implicated by the NY Attorney General for selling contaminated dietary supplements.  You can read the New York Times article, the cease and desist letters, and the test results here.  You can read the Kentucky Class Action Lawsuit we filed  by clicking on the following link. Walmart Supplement Class Action

According to the NY Attorney General, the following products from the following stores are at issue.  Please feel free to contact Hans Poppe at 502-895-3400 if you'd like additional information.

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Target's “Up and Up” brand of St. Johns Wort and Valerian root contained none of those ingredients.Credit Yana Paskova for The New York Times

The New York State attorney general’s office accused four national retailers on Monday of selling dietary supplements that were fraudulent and in many cases contaminated with unlisted ingredients.

The authorities said they had run tests on popular store brands of herbal supplements at the retailers — Walmart, Walgreens, Target and GNC — which showed that roughly four out of five of the products contained none of the herbs listed on their labels. In many cases, the authorities said, the supplements contained little more than cheap fillers like rice and house plants, or substances that could be hazardous to people with food allergies.

At GNC, for example, the agency found that five out of six samples from the company’s signature “Herbal Plus” brand of supplements “were either unrecognizable or a substance other than what they claimed to be.” In pills labeled ginkgo biloba, the agency found only rice, asparagus and spruce, an ornamental plant commonly used for Christmas decorations.

At Target, the agency tested six herbal products from its popular “Up and Up” store brand of supplements. Three out of six – including ginkgo biloba, St. John’s wort and valerian root, a sleep aid – tested negative for the herbs listed on their labels. But the agency did find that the pills contained powdered rice, beans, peas and wild carrots.

Here are the products that were analyzed by the attorney general, along with the test results that were described in cease-and-desist letters that the agency sent to the four retailers.

From GNC, Herbal Plus brand:

Gingko Biloba:

St. John’s Wort

Ginseng

Garlic

Echinacea

Saw Palmetto

From Target, Up & Up brand

Gingko Biloba

St. John’s Wort

Garlic

Echinacea

Saw Palmetto

Valerian Root

From Walgreens, Finest Nutrition brand

Gingko Biloba

St. John’s Wort

Ginseng

Garlic

Echinacea

Saw Palmetto

From Walmart, Spring Valley brand

Gingko Biloba

St. John’s Wort

Ginseng

Garlic

Echinacea

Saw Palmetto