Judge: Plant Spread Can Be Called ‘Vegan Butter’

Sept. 4, 2020
A marketer of plant-based analogue dairy spread has been granted the right to use the word “butter” on its packaging in California by a federal judge.

A marketer of plant-based analogue dairy spread has been granted the right to use the word “butter” on its packaging in California by a federal judge.

Miyoko’s Kitchen, which calls its plant spread “vegan butter,” sued after the California Department of Food and Agriculture told the company to stop using the terms “butter,” “lactose-free” and “cruelty-free” on its labeling. U.S. District Court judge Richard Seeborg granted a preliminary injunction allowing the use of those terms, stating that California’s attempt to prove that they would mislead consumers was “empirically underwhelming.”

Seeborg did forbid Miyoko’s Kitchen from using “hormone-free,” because plants have hormones, and “revolutionizing dairy with plants,” which he called “plainly misleading.”

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