There is potentially a class action lawsuit facing restaurant chain, Subway, over chicken that may, in fact, not be chicken. On the 3rd of March, a lawsuit was entered in the U.S. District Court of Connecticut after news erupted concerning a DNA report that the “chicken” used in Subway’s chicken food products is actually only 53.6% chicken meat. The reported stated that some sandwiches came back with worse results than others, like the sweet onion teriyaki chicken sandwich, which was discovered to be 42.8% chicken DNA.
Per the report in the lawsuit, Subway is the only restaurant, among the ones tested, that had a quantity of plant-based DNA great enough to be recognized as a species of soy. The lawsuit, which is twenty-two pages, lays out the allegation that the Connecticut-based corporation pays a substantial sum of money to adequately deliver deceptive information to customers all over the U.S.
Craig Moskowitz, a Stamford resident, had the lawsuit filed on his behalf after claiming he is a regular consumer of Subway’s products.
As of Monday evening, no one has been available to comment from the fast-food chain, Subway, nor has a lawyer been appointed to the case. However, the chain did blast back on the claim using their own website and different social media outlets, stating that according to their own DNA analysis, the chicken is 99% chicken DNA and the soy DNA is not greater than a single percent. On the use of soy, Subway claims that the plant is added to keep food products full of flavor and moist.
Concerns have been raised by both scientists and the restaurant chain as to the procedure implemented in the original report. “[The report] used factually incorrect data to suggest the chicken Subway serves might not be all chicken,” stated on the restaurant chain’s webpage. “The claims made in the story are false and misleading. We use only chicken—with added marinade, spices and seasoning. Producing high-quality food for our customers is our highest priority.”
Attorney for the Plaintiff, Sergei Lemberg, gave a statement to the Connecticut Law Tribune that, as of Monday, he would be having his firm conduct their own study of the chicken, so as to determine the percentage of chicken DNA in Subway’s menu items. Lemberg, owner of Lemberg Law in Wilton, Connecticut, made the comment that it would be “a couple of months” before the study would yield any results. “We’ll wait for the results and for the discovery process to shed light on whether this chicken is or is not completely chicken,” Lemberg was quoted on the matter.
At this point, it is unclear how many individuals are eligible to join the lawsuit, according to the lawsuit, but it clear that the numbers could be in the millions. It has not been made clear what is necessary to be a party to the class action. On this Lemberg made the comment that it would have to be determined in the discovery, but that all that could be needed is a receipt from Subway indicating a purchase of a chicken product.
Compensatory, punitive and statutory damages are being sought in the lawsuit.