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Dunkin' Donuts sued over lack of blueberries in blueberry donuts

One customer is alleging that the doughnut chain misleads customers into thinking there is real fruit in their blueberry doughnuts.
/ Source: TODAY

When you order a "blueberry" doughnut, it’s fair to expect that there are actual blueberries in the recipe. Sometimes, though, that’s not the case and it's rubbing some doughnut lovers the wrong way.

A Dunkin' Donuts customer in Chicago has filed a class-action suit against the chain, claiming some of the company’s blueberry pastries are misleading to consumers because they lack any actual blueberries.

The lawsuit, filed in July in a Northern Illinois district court, alleges that Dunkin’ is violating the Illinois’ Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act since items like the Blueberry Crumb Cake doughnut only contain imitation blueberries "that highly resemble actual blueberries due to their round shape and blue color." The imitation blueberries are actually “flavored crystals” made of sugar, corn syrup, and Blue 1 dye.

It should be noted, however, that the chain’s blueberry muffins do contain real blueberries. So real blueberries are available. Somewhere.

"Due to their blue color and round shape, the 'flavor crystals' and 'blueberry flavored bits' are inserted strategically on the inside and outside of the Blueberry Products to induce unsuspecting consumers into believing that the products contain actual blueberries,” the lawsuit states, pointing out that these menu items are also advertised next to pictures of blueberries and labeled as such in the store, which supposedly misleads consumers.

The lead plaintiff alleges that he would have paid far less for the baked good (which he reportedly bought for just under a dollar) had he known they were fake blueberries and not the real thing. He is seeking $5 million in damages, restitution, and court fees.

This isn't the first time a doughnut chain has faced a lawsuit over its fake fruit ingredients.

In November, Krispy Kreme faced the same type of lawsuit when a customer issued a complaint about the lack of real blueberries or authentic maple syrup in their doughnuts, and called out the pastries' labeling as false advertising. That suit was later voluntarily dismissed.

And this isn't the first time that Dunkin’ Donuts has faced a similar suit, either. They've been sued over the supposed lack of steak in their steak sandwiches and for not using real butter on their buttered bagels.