StarKist Co. has reached a legal settlement that could affect anyone who has bought a can of its tuna in recent years.
According to the lawsuit, the federal government sets standards for how much tuna must be inside a “5-ounce” can. The plaintiff in the case, Patrick Hendricks, of Oakland, California, took samples of the tuna to see whether or not it met the federal standard.
Chunk Light Tuna in Water, on average, fell 1/2 ounce below the federal standard of 2.84 ounces of pressed cake tuna per 5-ounce can, according to the lawsuit. That’s 17.3 percent under the legal standard, reported Cleveland.com.
Solid white tuna in water had on average only 6.83 percent less than the legal standard. Solid white tuna in oil fell 3.7 percent below, and chunk light tuna in vegetable oil was only 1.1 percent shy of the standard, according to the lawsuit.
Though StarKist Co. did not admit any wrongdoing, the company settled the suit by offering to compensate those who have purchased even one can of their 5-ounce products between Feb. 19, 2009 and Oct. 31, 2014.
Compensation can come in either the form of $25 in cash or $50 in canned tuna. A receipt is not necessary, as the settlement recognized that most do not retain their receipts for canned tuna, meaning compensation works on an honor system.
Filing a false claim, or otherwise trying to receive compensation if you did not meet the criteria, is considered perjury. In the U.S., the statute for general perjury under federal law classifies perjury as a felony with a sentence of as many as five years behind bars.
Twitter users who presumably meet the criteria for a settlement have been conflicted with how they want to be compensated. User Caitlin Bower, wrote, “The most agonizing decision I've made in the last month is whether to claim $25 or $50 of tuna from the Starkist lawsuit.”
Others opted to stock their shelves with the fish.
Twitter user @katlinmantia wrote, “I am getting $50.0 of starkist tuna vouchers for a class action lawsuit….. #LifeGoals,” reported Inquisitr.
A claim can be filed at TunaLawsuit.com