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Nestle's Poland Spring Water Settlement OKd

November 06, 2003|From Bloomberg News

Nestle, the world's largest food company, won an Illinois judge's approval of a $12-million settlement of class-action claims that its Poland Spring water isn't naturally pure spring water from the Maine woods.

The settlement, if upheld, may block 11 similar lawsuits in the U.S. over Poland Spring. Kane County Circuit Judge Michael Colwell approved the settlement, which provides customers with $8 million in discounts and coupons over five years and requires the company to make $2.75 million in charitable donations.

The customers' allegations, which highlight a debate within the industry about the definition of "spring water," haven't dented profits for either Poland Spring or bottled water in general, analysts say.

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