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January 24, 2013
MOUNT HOLLY, N.J. "Footlong" and Subway are as synonymous as "Quarter Pounder" and McDonald's. But while Mickey D's reveals its burger is actually a quarter pound before its cooked, Subway doesn't tell the truth about its Footlong.
The famous $5 sandwich isn't actually 12 inches, according to a lawsuit that has been filed in New Jersey against Subway and its parent company Doctor's Associates, Inc.
Charles Noah Pendrak and John Farley have filed a complaint under the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act, seeking to bring a class-action lawsuit on behalf of Subway customers who bought a Footlong in The Garden State over the last six years.
Subway's alleged infraction? Serving a Footlong that is at least 5 percent less sandwich than Subway promised.
"By providing less than what was promised in hundreds of thousands of instances, Subway has managed to inflate profits in New Jersey by hundreds of thousands of dollars, using false and deceptive information to accomplish this result," declares the 14-page lawsuit, which was filed in New Jersey Superior Court, Burlington County.
In an interview with The Associated Press, plaintiffs' lawyer Stephen DeNittis stated a measurement of Footlong subs from 17 shops revealed each one fell short.
The lawsuit asserts plaintiffs didn't have to actually rely on Subway's statements in order to invoke the state Consumer Fraud Act because the statute "requires merely some causal nexus between the deceptive statement and the purchase, not actual reliance."
A Subway spokesman, Les Winograd, declined to comment on the lawsuit, but he told TODAY the restaurant franchise is committed to ensuring its famous sub is actually a foot long.
"We freshly bake our bread throughout the day in our more than 38,000 restaurants in 100 countries worldwide, and we have redoubled our efforts to ensure consistency and correct length in every sandwich we serve," Winograd said in an emailed statement. "Our commitment remains steadfast to ensure that every Subway Footlong sandwich is 12 inches at each location worldwide."
The hullabaloo over Subway's Footlong reportedly came to light after an Australian teenager posted a photo of the sandwich on Facebook with a measuring tape next to it showing the sub came up short by about an inch. The photo has received more than 131,000 likes on the social networking site, and the consensus is not unanimous on whether it matters if the Footlong is actually 12 inches.
"I am calling for congressional hearings about this!", quipped one person on Facebook.
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