A Taco Bell diner is beefing with the fast-food chain, claiming its false advertising led him to buy a pizza that turned out to be very short on meat.
In a lawsuit filed Tuesday, New York City resident Frank Siragusa alleged that Taco Bell's advertising is "unfair and materially misleading," claiming that the restaurant company overstates how much "beef and/or ingredients" are in its menu items.
According to the complaint, photos of Taco Bell's menu items that appear in the store and in food delivery apps show "at least double" the amount of meat and vegetables actually contained in its Crunchwraps and Mexican Pizzas. To illustrate the allegations, the complaint also compares what an attorney for Siragusa say is stock footage of Taco Bell's food with decidedly slimmer examples of actual products the suit said was pulled from Reddit and user reviews.
These ads "are unfair and financially damaging to consumers," the complaint alleges, calling them "especially concerning now that inflation, food and meat prices are very high and many consumers, especially lower income consumers, are struggling financially."
Yum Brands, Taco Bell's parent company, did not immediately respond to a message requesting comment on the suit.
Siragusa isn't the first unhappy restaurant customer to call attention to this supposed discrepancy — the complaint links to a YouTube review, Reddit thread and new articles that bemoan the alleged lack of meat in Taco Bell's menu items.
"The first thing I noticed was how small it looked," reporter Anthony Russo wrote for the U.S. Sun shortly after Taco Bell revived the Mexican Pizza last September. "Another thing, it wasn't as beefy as the commercial pictures made it look."
However, Russo ultimately concluded that the dish was "edible" and "certainly wasn't as bad as I thought it would be once I opened the box."
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