Ben & Jerry’s sued over ‘happy cow’ characterization

National
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BURBANK, CA – APRIL 7: Co-founders of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream Ben Cohen (L) and Jerry Greenfield attend the partnership launch of Ben & Jerry’s and The ONE campaign’s fight against global poverty at a Ben & Jerry’s store April 7, 2008 in Burbank, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)

BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) — Ben & Jerry’s is facing a lawsuit accusing the ice cream maker and its parent company of false advertising by saying the milk and cream in its products comes from “happy cows.”

In a complaint filed Oct. 31 in federal court in Burlington, Vermont, where Ben & Jerry’s was founded, environmental advocate James Ehlers accuses the company and Unilever of deceiving consumers.

He says many of the farms that produce the milk and cream are factory-style, mass production dairy operations. He says only some are part of the company’s “Caring Dairy” program.

A Ben & Jerry’s spokesman said Friday that the company doesn’t comment on pending lawsuits. He said it’s proud of the work it’s done with Vermont family farmers and is committed to building a resilient, regenerative dairy supply.

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