Skittles Contain Titanium Dioxide, Lawsuit Claims

Jenile Thames filed a complaint against Mars Inc., alleging the defendant knowingly sold their famed Skittles candy even though they allegedly contain titanium dioxide. The complaint’s charges against the defendant include violation of California’s Unfair Competition Law, the Consumer Legal Remedies Act, false advertising, and fraud.

The chemical compound, a “known toxin,” is purportedly used to give Skittles their noticeable color. However, the plaintiffs note, competing candies are able to achieve similar results without using titanium dioxide.

According to the complaint, Mars Inc. announced in a 2016 press release that they planned to phase out the use of titanium dioxide in Skittles. However, six years later, titanium dioxide is still listed on the back of the Skittles package, the complaint says; the plaintiffs add that the notation is difficult to read because of the coloring of the package.

In 2021, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) issued their report on the health concerns associated with Titanium Dioxide, determining the chemical is unsafe for human consumption.

In 2022, the defendant was required to comply with the EFSA’s (and European Commission’s) ban on the use of this chemical. However, the complaint alleges that the defendant continues to use titanium dioxide in Skittles sold in the United States.

“As long as Defendant may market the Products as safe for consumption when the Products are not safe consumption, then when presented with false or misleading information when shopping, he will be unable to make informed decisions about whether to purchase Defendant’s Products and will be unable to evaluate the different prices between Defendant’s Products and competitor’s Products,” the complaint argued.

The plaintiff seeks the following for relief: an order certifying the action as a class action, a declaration the defendant’s conduct is in violation of the aforementioned laws, injunctive relief, and damages.The plaintiff is represented by BURSOR & FISHER, P.A.