The Behaviour of the Average Consumer: A Little Less Normativity and a Little More Reality in the Court's Case Law? Reflections on Teekanne

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4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In Teekanne, the Court of Justice held that the labelling of foodstuffs may not give the
impression that an ingredient is present in a product where it is in fact not present, and this is
apparent solely from the list of ingredients on the packaging. The judgment marks a
significant realignment of previous cases that had considered the behaviour of consumers
regarding the list of ingredients. In prior case law the Court had found consumers to be
adequately protected if they had the possibility to gather the relevant information from the list
of ingredients. In Teekanne, the Court stipulated that such information on the ingredients list
is not able to “correct” a “consumer’s erroneous or misleading impression” created by the
“overall labelling” taken as a whole. The ruling is potentially the first case in a series of
judgments that understands the “average consumer” in a less normative way, and is open to
arguments about the real-world vulnerability levels of consumers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)590-598
JournalEuropean Law Review
Volume41
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2016

Keywords

  • Unfair Commercial Practices, EU law, Average Consumer, Behavioural Law

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