Lawsuit Filed Against 28 California Wineries For High Levels Of Arsenic In Low Priced Wines

Important Note: In an earlier post, we included an archive photo of a wine store that showed a Pali Wine Co. label. Pali Wine Co. is NOT named in the lawsuit. We regret the inclusion of the photo, which has now been removed.

Many popular, low priced brands of wine may contain illegal and dangerously high levels of poisonous inorganic arsenic, according to a lawsuit filed against 28 California wineries.

Some of the popular wine brands named in the lawsuit include Trader Joe's Two Buck Chuck, Franzia, Menage a Trois, Sutter Home, Wine Cube, Charles Shaw, Glen Ellen, Cupcake, Beringer and Vendage. The wines named in the lawsuit are primarily inexpensive white or blush varietals including Moscato, Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc.

Click this PDF file for the list of wines named in the lawsuit.

Arsenic is an odorless, colorless chemical that is usually detected in the ground, especially in fields treated with pesticides. California has set standards of levels that are supposed to be safe, but according to the lawsuit, testing done on more than 80 wines shows that the levels are coming in much higher.

The Wine Institute, which acts as the main lobby for California winemakers, responded to the lawsuit by saying the allegations are not true, and that all wine sold in the US is safe.

California voters approved proposition 65, the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act, and if true, the allegations would be violations of the California Health and Safety Code.

If you want more information, go to, where there are details about the levels of arsenic found in the particular wines listed.

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