A class action lawsuit has been filed against the makers of Fireball Cinnamon over the labels that the plaintiff says are purposefully misleading customers into thinking the product contains whisky.
The lawsuit was filed against Sazerac Company, Inc. on behalf of Anna Marquez in Illinois, but seeks to cover anyone in the state and also in North Dakota, Wyoming, Idaho, Alaska, Iowa, Mississippi, Arkansas, Kansas, Arizona, South Carolina or Utah who purchased Fireball Cinnamon. It seeks an amount in excess of $5 million for unspecified statutory and punitive damages.
You may have seen the mini bottles at supermarkets or convenience stores and wondered how they were allowed to sell them. It’s because, unlike Fireball Cinnamon Whisky, Fireball Cinnamon doesn’t contain whisky. It’s actually a malt-based beverage with less than half the alcohol content by volume.
The lawsuit states that “Expecting those small bottles labeled ‘Fireball Cinnamon’ to contain whiskey’ ‘[was] an easy mistake to make, and one intended by the manufacturer.’”
The label also uses the word “whisky” in its content description saying the product is a “Malt Beverage With Natural Whisky & Other Flavors and Carmel Color.”
The makers of the products think the distinction is pretty clear despite the fact that the bottles and labels look nearly identical. The Fireball Whisky website’s FAQ section says customers can tell the products apart by following this simple rule:
- Any package with Fireball ‘Cinnamon Whisky’ on the front label is our whisky-based product.
- Any product with Fireball ‘Cinnamon’ on the front label, without ‘Whisky’, is either our malt-based or wine-based product.
Read the full lawsuit below: