August 2018 - In August 2018, a consumer filed a $5 million lawsuit against Ainsworth Pet Nutrition, Rachael Ray’s Nutrish dog food brand, alleging that “natural” claims were false and misleading under state consumer protection laws, based on testing that found residues of the herbicide, glyphosate.
A New York District Judge in the Nutrish case dismissed the claims for failure to indicate the level of glyphosate detected and to say whether it was harmful.
The judge dismissed the complaint a second time upon finding the total glyphosate alleged to be present in the Nutrish samples is between 0.005% to 0.01% of the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) allowed tolerance, and ruled that labeling such pet food as “natural” is not materially misleading to a reasonable consumer.
April 2020 - A class action lawsuit alleges Rachael Ray Nutrish-brand Zero Grain dog food is harmful to dogs in that the product is deficient of taurine and contains legume-based protein, a combination linked to a potentially fatal heart condition when used in grain-free foods.
The plaintiff, a Los Angeles resident, claims consumers would not have bought the premium-priced dog food, sometimes paying up to double what competitors charge for similar products, absent the defendants’ “deceptive and misleading” representations. The lawsuit alleges Nutrish Zero Grain dog food lacks taurine, an amino acid the defendants know is necessary to maintain dogs’ health.
The plaintiff alleges Rachael Ray Nutrish and the J.M. Smucker Company have “deceived the public” into buying the following Zero Grain dog foods.