Heineken Facing Lawsuit for Alcohol-Free Beer Containing Alcohol: Report

by Madison Miller
Photo by: STR/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Heineken is being targeted in a lawsuit after its alcohol-free beer is reportedly discovered to have alcohol in it.

There are three common descriptions for beer — alcoholic, non-alcoholic, and alcohol-free. For a beer to wear the name of non-alcoholic, it must have less than 0.5 percent alcohol by volume. That means when you’re picking up a case of non-alcoholic beer, there will be just the smallest trace of alcohol in the brew.

Meanwhile, those who want absolutely no alcohol, look for the alcohol-free label. These beers must have 0.0 percent ABV. Absolutely no trace of alcohol should appear in this brew at all.

Heineken Getting Sued Over Alcohol-Free Beer

This is how Heineken, the popular Dutch brand of beer, is getting a major slap on the wrist.

The beer brand launched an alcohol-free product in 2019. As it turns out, Heineken is rounding down a 0.3 percent ABV to 0.0. According to Food & Wine, a Louisiana woman named Kathleen M. Wilson filed a lawsuit last month over this discrepancy in beer labeling. “Heineken 0.0 does contain alcohol in the amount of less than 0.03 percent alcohol,” the lawsuit states.

Although her source is unclear, it doesn’t seem to be far off. The F.A.Q. page on the Heineken site even states that the beer “contains an extremely small amount of alcohol, maximum 0.03 percent ABV.”

It’s not entirely uncommon to spot small traces of alcohol in different products. Fermentation is natural and the 0.03 percent ABV isn’t unlike other bakery or even juice products with minuscule levels of alcohol. For example, burger rolls, rye bread, bananas, pears, and even sugarless gum all have hidden traces of alcohol.

Heineken is firmly stating that its labeling matches local food laws. Meanwhile, the plaintiff is suing for a violation of the Louisiana Unfair Trade Practices Act, amongst several other things.

Folgers Lawsuit

Meanwhile, the popular coffee brand Folgers is brewing up some trouble for itself as well.

Statista reports that Folgers was the most popular ground coffee in 2020 in the U.S. with more than $1 billion in sales. Now, however, one customer is unhappy with the company so much so that they’re taking it to court.

The Missouri man is stating that Folgers is dishonest about the amount of coffee each of its cans is able to make. “It is a classic and unlawful bait-and-switch scheme that causes unsuspecting consumers to spend more money for less than the advertised amount of coffee they believe they are purchasing,” he explained to The Kansas City Star.

He states that it only contains 68.29% of the coffee it claims to have packaged. The brand does say on its packaging that it can produce “up to” a certain amount of cups of coffee, which may be the golden ticket out of all of this.