Granola bars aren't what you think they are, new lawsuits claim

Can granola bars truly claim to contain “all-natural” oats if the oats contain a pesticide?

Lawsuits filed Wednesday in New York, California, Minnesota, and Washington, D.C. argue that because General Mills’ Nature Valley granola bars contain small amounts of pesticide, the bar’s “100%-natural” claims dupe customers, Bloomberg reports.

According to the complaints, Nature Valley products such as Crunchy Oats & Honey and Sweet & Salty Nut granola bars that say they’re made with “100% natural whole grain oats,” actually contain a small amount of the pesticide glyphosate.

The amount of the pesticide present is well below the legal limit in the US. The problem, the lawsuits argue, is that if the company wants to claim its products are 100% natural, they shouldn’t contain any pesticides at all.

Last year, the World Health Organisation classified glyphosate as a “probable” carcinogen, resulting in renewed focus on the potential health risks of the chemical in food. However, a report by WHO released earlier this year stated that it was unlikely that the pesticide would negatively impact people consuming it small amounts as part of their normal diets.

In May, a similar lawsuit was filed against
The Quaker Oats Company. The other lawsuit, which Bloomberg reports was brought by some of the same attorneys as the General Mills suits, argued that because testing of Quaker Oats Quick 1-Minute reportedly found traces of glyphosate, the company could not use the “100% natural” label.

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