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Plant-Based Company Miyoko’s Creamery Sues California’s DFA for Violating Free Speech Laws



  • by Peter Manley

In most cases, when a company files a lawsuit, it is typically against another company or an individual. However, the vegan company Miyoko’s is filing a lawsuit against the California Department of Food and Agriculture (DFA) for violation of free speech.

The lawsuit developed after the California Department of Food and Agriculture demanded that Miyoko’s discontinue the use of several terms, such as “butter”, “dairy”, and “cruelty-free”. Furthermore, the California DFA also requested that the vegan company remove from its website an image of a woman hugging a cow.

Assisting Miyoko’s Creamery, the animal-advocacy organization Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF for short) filed the lawsuit last week on behalf of the vegan company and against the California Department of Food and Agriculture. California’s DFA made the demands of the company despite the fact that Miyoko’s provided precise and accurate labeling of their products, with labels such as “vegan”, “plant-based”, and “made with plants”.

In the lawsuit filed by the Animal Legal Defense Fund, the organization explained that California’s DFA is wrongfully enforcing federal law and violating Miyoko’s Creamery’s basic right to freedom of speech.

In a statement, ALDF Executive Director––Stephen Wells-––said, “The government has no business censoring humane companies from accurately describing their animal-friendly products. The California Department of Food and Agriculture should be at the forefront of efforts to shift away from destructive factory farming, not acting to stifle its competitors.”

In comparison to animal products such as dairy cheese Miyoko’s production process results in nearly 20 times fewer greenhouse gas emissions. Despite the lawsuit underway, Miyoko’s is sending out a food truck to 17 major cities in the U.S., where it will be giving away 15,000 grilled cheese sandwiches. Through these grilled cheese sandwiches, Miyoko’s is introducing its new allergen-friendly vegan butter and cheese, which the sandwiches are made with.


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