When Do Lies Become the Truth?

I recently picked up a bottle of Campbell’s V8 V-Fusion Strawberry Banana juice blend. I read the ingredients. Ingredients in food products are listed in order of predominance in the product – The ingredient used the most is listed first; the ingredient used the least is listed last.

In the V8 V-Fusion Strawberry Banana juice blend product, a reasonable person would expect to see, after water, strawberry and banana. Think again. Here are the ingredients:

  • Water
  • Apple juice concentrate
  • Sweet potato juice concentrate
  • Carrot juice concentrate
  • Orange juice concentrate
  • Tomato paste
  • Beet juice
  • Fruit juice concentrate (apple juice concentrate, strawberry juice concentrate, banana puree)
  • Flavour
  • Ascorbic acid (Vitamin C)

There is more beet juice than strawberry juice concentrate or banana puree! Strawberry and banana are the last two items, just before flavour and vitamin C. Based on ingredients, this product should be called “Apple Sweet Potato juice blend” or “Strawberry Banana flavoured juice blend.”

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Do you think for a moment the labeling and naming of this product was by accident? Do you think the possibility of consumer confusion, believing this juice product comprised primarily strawberry and banana was lost on Campbell’s Foods?

At what point does telling a lie become the truth?  Do we just assume that no one will notice?