Brands may want to make “simply” a substitute for “natural,” but it’s tough to tell whether consumers will buy it—literally.
PepsiCo is the latest to ditch “natural” labels for the “simply” moniker. “Simply Natural” Frito-Lay chips are now just “simply.” And “Natural Quaker Granola is now “Simply Quaker Granola.”
The change comes as some companies are facing lawsuits over use of the word.
Kellogg’s was sued because its subsidiary, Kashi, used “a spectacular array of unnaturally processed and synthetic ingredients,” according to The Wall Street Journal
Some speculate that PepsiCo’s move is part of an ongoing trend away from the dangerous word “natural.” The company settled a lawsuit last year against its subsidiary, Naked Juice. Turns out “naked” doesn’t mean “natural.”
The company said in a statement
at the time:
In some products, we also include an added boost of vitamins. Naked juice and smoothies will continue to be labeled “non-GMO,” and until there is more detailed regulatory guidance around the word “natural” ― we've chosen not to use “All Natural” on our packaging.
General Mills’ Nature Valley bars used to bear the claim “100% natural” on the label—that is, until a 2012 lawsuit
called that into question.
The bars no longer have the claim on their packaging.
A judge threw out a lawsuit that claimed Arizona iced Tea was misleading customers by claiming to be “all natural.”
PepsiCo is downplaying the changes, a spokeswoman telling the AP
, “We constantly update our marketing and packaging,"
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Some are finding that simply hard to swallow.