BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) — Vermont reached a settlement with VerMints, a company that mislabeled its tins of mints as Vermont products.
The state attorney general's office sued the Braintree, Mass.-based mints-maker in 2012, saying that from 2006 to 2011 its metal tins were labeled as "Vermont's All Natural Mints." The attorney general's office said they actually were manufactured in Canada from mostly non-Vermont ingredients, thus violating consumer protection rules.
As part of the settlement announced Monday, VerMints agreed to donate $35,000 to the Vermont Foodbank, pay the state $30,000 and add corrective labeling to its products.
"Use of the term 'Vermont' has great economic value," said Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell, "and many businesses go to the expense of sourcing their ingredients and processing within the state in order to market their products as Vermont products. We need to maintain a level playing field when it comes to claims of geographic origin, and to ensure that consumers who care about where their food comes from get accurate information in the marketplace."
The Associated Press left a message seeking comment from Gary Rinkus, president of VerMints.