May 3, 2007

TRANS-FAT LAWSUIT DISMISSED:

A federal judge on Wednesday dismissed a lawsuit brought by a doctor who accused KFC of not telling customers that it used trans fats to fry its chicken.

In an occasionally sarcastic opinion, U.S. District Judge James Robertson said Dr. Arthur Hoyte could not show that he was harmed by KFC’s use of the artery-clogging fats.

That was enough to doom the lawsuit, but Robertson also noted other flaws in the case.

“While it might be appropriate for this court to find, as a matter of law, that the consumption of fat — including trans fat — is indeed within the reasonable expectations of the consumers of fried chicken and french fries prepared in fast food kitchens, it is not necessary for me to reach that question,” Robertson wrote.

And in response to Hoyte’s claim that customers have a growing understanding of the dangers of trans fats, Robertson wrote: “If consumers are increasingly aware of trans fat, where do they expect to find it if not in fast food restaurants?”

The sarcasm is merited. Costs and sanctions, would have been, too . . . .

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