Stop & Shop Slammed for Selling Wipes That Could Clog Your Toilet
The popular supermarket chain is being hit with a new lawsuit for some of its products.
From groceries to gas needs, Stop & Shop is truly a one-stop shop for many consumers throughout the U.S. But it seems this popular supermarket chain isn't without its problems. In fact, Stop & Shop is now facing a new lawsuit over some of the wipes it markets to shoppers. Read on to find out why one customer is warning that these wipes could actually clog your toilet.
Stop & Shop is being hit with a new lawsuit.
Stop & Shop is facing criticism from a customer over one specific product. On April 26, plaintiff Mark Schotte filed a class action lawsuit against The Stop & Shop Supermarket Company, LLC in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts. According to the suit, Schotte claims that the retailer is falsely marketing its store brand and Always My Baby-branded cleansing wipe products as "flushable."
When Best Life reached out to Stop & Shop about the new lawsuit, a spokesperson for the company said it "does not comment on active litigation."
The plaintiff claims the retailer's wipes are not actually flushable.
Flushable wipes act as an "alternative to toilet paper," according to the lawsuit. The term flushable is understood to mean that they can be disposed of by flushing down a toilet. "As a result, reasonable consumers expect that 'flushable wipe' products will disperse in a short amount of time after flushing and therefore will not clog or cause other operational problems in household sewage lines, septic systems, and other standard wastewater equipment," the suit explained.
But Schotte is claiming that the Stop & Shop wipes referenced in the case are not actually able to quickly disintegrate into small pieces when flushed. "In fact, the wipes are not flushable, in that they do not break apart of disperse in a reasonable period of time after flushing, resulting in clogs or other sewage," he said in the lawsuit.
Stop & Shop is being accused of mislabeling these wipes.
The lawsuit states that Stop & Shop is allegedly engaging in "widespread false and deceptive advertising" for some of its flushable wipes products. On the front of both its Stop & Shop-branded and Always My Baby-branded wipes, the word "flushable" is included in "bold, prominent font," according to the suit.
But each package also contains a less-noticeable disclaimer, warning that the wipes are not technically flushable in all systems. "No reasonable consumer would even notice the disclaimer, which is located on the underside of the packaging, in small print, and is hidden by a tab that must be folded up to even view it," Schotte notes. As a result, the plaintiff claims that this is a misrepresentation and Stop & Shop is violating Massachusetts' consumer protection laws.
Schotte says shoppers are paying more than they should as a result.
Flushable wipes are often more costly for consumers than non-flushable wipes and traditional toilet paper. In fact, the lawsuit states that Stop & Shop does sell its "flushable" wipes at a higher cost than its own non-flushable wipes. According to an example presented in the case, the scented Always My Baby Thick & Gentle Baby Wipes sold by the retailer costs just around 4 cents per wipe while its Always My Baby Toddler Wipes Melonberry Flushable Wipes and Stop & Shop Flushable Cleansing Wipes Fresh Scent both rack up approximately 5 cents per wipe.
This means that shoppers were paying "at minimum" 25 percent more for Stop & Shop's flushable wipes due to these claims. "The mislabeling of the wipes renders the products completely worthless," Schotte claims in the class action case. "There is no value to consumers for purportedly 'flushable' wipes that are not actually flushable."