The court of public opinion doesn’t hold too much weight when it comes to the actual decisions titans of the food industry make regarding their menu items. Name a popular order and we can find hundreds, if not thousands of people who hate said order, but that doesn’t mean McDonalds will retire the Filet-O-Fish. When it comes to the actual court of law though, the powers that be might be more open to change. A new NBC News report details a Florida class-action lawsuit that alleges Burger King has been falsely advertising the size of its Whopper.
The lawsuit claims that most of Burger King’s offerings are “materially overstated,” with the onus of this false advertisement being placed on the item that has come to represent the fast-food chain: the Whopper. Plaintiffs say the advertised Whopper appears about 35 percent bigger than . Those affected believe that Burger King has been exaggerating the size of its range of burgers in promotional images and advertisements, beginning in September 2017.
Anthony Russo, the attorney who filed the case to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, is seeking to recoup monetary damages for whoever was “deceived” by the fast-food chain’s advertising, in addition to a court order that would force Burger King to discontinue its faulty marketing practices.
Publicly-sourced suit — The evidence included in the case includes photos that customers have collected themselves, as well as references to various YouTubers that make food reviews and Twitter users who have taken to the app to lambast the size of their Whoppers.
Another facet of the lawsuit focuses on the rising costs of living, citing that the burger’s misrepresentation is “especially concerning now that inflation, food and meat prices are very high and consumers, especially lower-income consumers, are struggling financially.”
Lawsuits filed against fast-food behemoths over false advertising are not exactly surprising — Jonathan Maze, the editor in chief of Restaurant Business, noted in the aforementioned NBC News report that chains are likely to pay settlements “when they fear bad publicity,” despite the case in question lacking merit.
Over the summer of 2020, Burger King faced a lawsuit over its Impossible Whopper, with plaintiffs accusing the chain of misleading them into believing that the vegan option was cooked on separate grills from the ones used for beef and chicken. That case was dismissed because the claim was deemed “too individualized.”