The Man Suing Texas Pete Hot Sauce Is Coming For Whole Foods' Mac And Cheese

We all know that times are tough when it comes to grocery shopping. Food inflation is the worst it's been in 40 years, and along with prices being higher than ever, some customers have noticed some allegedly shady practices in the packaging of foods they once loved. Skimpflation, a term used to describe dips in quality in both the service and production industries, seems to be on the rise (via NPR). Additionally, shrinkflation has customers scrutinizing packages.

For those not in the know, shrinkflation is used to describe the act of food manufacturers decreasing the amount of food they put in each package, so the perceived value remains the same, even though customers are getting less for the same money. That's one way to avoid hiking up prices, but for brands with litigious customers, this ethically-muddy practice could open up a minefield, which Whole Foods recently learned thanks to a lawsuit (via Fox 8).

Whole Foods is accused of false advertising

One man, Phillip White, seems to be on a crusade against allegedly deceptive packaging and advertising practices in the grocery store, and shrinkflaters and skimpflaters had better watch out. So far, White has filed lawsuits against Texas Pete hot sauce (it's made in North Carolina, not Texas), Kroger (claiming that its reef-friendly sunscreen actually contains ingredients that damage coral reefs), and now, Whole Foods, due to suspicions of skimpflation. 

According to Fox 8, White teamed up with Matthew Sinatro and the Clarkson Law Firm in June of 2022 to file a suit against Mrs. Gooch's Natural Food Markets Inc. and Whole Foods Market California Inc. The lawsuit claims that boxes of the companies' macaroni and cheese contain a misleadingly small amount of product when compared to the package size. 

To the plaintiffs, it's misleading shrinkflation run amok, and they're asking Whole Foods and Mrs. Gooch's to compensate their customers and change their packaging. But is the packaging of its macaroni and cheese actually misleading? It would appear that answer will be up to a judge to decide.