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Class action suit against Tito’s Vodka put on hold.


A California federal judge has put a class action suit against Tito’s Handmade Vodka producer Fifth Generation Inc. on hold because of a technical issue, but has also rejected most of Fifth Generation’s arguments aimed at dismissing the suit, which maintains that Fifth Generation misled consumers with its “handmade” claim. U.S. district judge Jeffrey Miller partially granted Austin, Texas-based Fifth Generation’s motions to dismiss, on grounds that lead plaintiff Gary Hofmann omitted from his argument a claim that he wouldn’t have purchased the vodka if it hadn’t been labeled “handmade.” But Miller ruled against Fifth Generation’s argument that its label could deceive no reasonable consumer. He also rejected Tito’s other claims, writing, “The court is not persuaded that plaintiff must allege that Tito’s was defective, that he could have purchased comparable vodka for less or that it matters if the vodka he bought was worth, in strictly monetary terms, what he paid for it.” The judge added that Hofmann—whose suit contends that Tito’s handmade claim misleads consumers because the vodka is actually mass-produced—appears prepared to amend his complaint in order to proceed with the suit. – Shanken News Daily

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