Big Mayo Files Frivolous Lawsuit Against Eggless Competitor

Food Giant Unilever suing Hampton Creek for daring to offer a cruelty-free and sustainable alternative, whining that: “Just Mayo already is stealing market share from Hellmann’s”

Just Mayo

Business school pop quiz: What’s a $60 billion global behemoth to do when a San Francisco start-up cuts into their profits? If answers like “innovate your products” or “hire a better marketing team” come to mind, you must not work at Unilever. That company’s response to competition is to take them to court. Unilever owns many top food brands such as Best Foods (and is also the largest deodorant maker in the world). The company is suing Hampton Creek for unfair business practices and false advertising, claiming their plant-based product called Just Mayo is deceptive to consumers because it doesn’t contain eggs. Actually that’s the whole point: to not use eggs.

Started in 2011, Hampton Creek has received a lot of media attention (and financial backing) for its scientific approach to making plant-based alternatives to eggs, aiming at the heart of a cruel and unsustainable industry. The company’s first consumer product, Just Mayo has enjoyed a fast rise to success, not only in natural retail channels like Whole Foods, but also mainstream markets such as Walmart, Costco, Target, and even Dollar Tree. Unlike previous vegan spreads that mimic mayonnaise, Just Mayo is not aimed at just being a niche product; and that’s exactly has Unilever, maker of Hellmann’s and Best Foods, shaking in their boots.

Cleaning up a dirty and outdated industry

It’s an idea whose time has come. The conventional egg industry is notoriously inhumane and wasteful. It’s not just that egg-laying hens live in cramped conditions, but egg production uses an unbelievable amount of energy, especially when compared to Hampton Creek’s approach. Here is how Forbes describes the comparison: “The ratio of energy input to food energy output for chicken-laid eggs is about 39-to-1, behind only beef and lamb farming. Hampton Creek’s plant products maintain a ratio of 2-to-1.” This translates directly into costs savings for consumers.

So Hampton Creek has figured out how to make a mayonnaise product that avoids cruelty to animals (and salmonella), conserves huge amounts of energy, and costs less. And if you’re wondering how it tastes, I was blown away by the similarity in flavor and texture, and judging by the brand’s fast growth, it’s obviously a huge hit.

But instead of keeping up with changing times, Unilever is determined to remain stuck in the past. In its legal complaint, the company argues that Just Mayo cannot possibly be mayonnaise because both the dictionary and the Food and Drug Administration say that mayonnaise contains egg. Over and over, like a hurt child, Unilever lawyers argue: “Just Mayo is not mayonnaise. It does not contain any egg.” Yes, we know. That’s Hampton Creek’s entire business model, they aren’t hiding it. It’s right there on the ingredient label. No eggs.

I am the first one to call out deceptive marketing, for example, when Coca-Cola makes a product called “Pomegranate Blueberry Flavored Blend of Five Juices” that contains only .3 percent pomegranate and .2 percent blueberry. Pom Wonderful is suing Coca-Cola using the same federal anti-competition law that Unilever is citing, and the U.S. Supreme Court recently gave that case the green light. But in contrast, Hampton Creek is completely up front about what it’s doing: making a plant-based mayonnaise. Moreover, the product has been covered in major media outlets like Time, Forbes, and Fortune so how can it possibly be deceiving anybody?

This case is just a desperate attempt to get the courts to intervene in marketplace competition. (Funny how Corporate America loves the term “free market” except when they are under threat.) Unilever’s own legal complaint says it best: “Hampton Creek is seizing market share from Unilever’s Best Foods and Hellmann’s brands of mayonnaise products.” That’s called capitalism.

Now it’s true that FDA’s “standard of identity” (i.e., definition) for mayonnaise includes eggs; well specifically, “egg yolk-containing ingredients”, yum. But that simply reflects an out-dated regulation badly in need of a 21st-century upgrade. (According to FDA, mayonnaise was first defined in 1957.) It’s not Hampton Creek’s fault if its innovation is out-pacing federal regulations. That’s par for the course in almost any technology-driven industry. The company’s CEO Josh Tetrick told Food Navigator yesterday that FDA has only defined “mayonnaise” but not “mayo”, and that other vegan spreads use that word as well.

To put this lawsuit into perspective, it’s the equivalent of the biggest bully in the school yard beating up the nerdiest kid. In this case, the bully just also happens to source eggs from producers that engage in the cruel practice of maceration – grinding or suffocating baby male chicks while still alive – because males are useless in egg production. Unilever promises that practice will end, but offers no timeline. Ironically, Unilever also says they are exploring “preferences for plant-based protein sources through the use of egg-replacement ingredients”. Great idea, get on that.

So instead of putting the company’s massive resources toward cleaning up its own act, Unilever has instead chosen to attack a competitor that has solved the problem.

Unilever is asking the court not only to make Hampton Creek stop using the Just Mayo name (and remove all current product from store shelves), but also to pay Unilever the amount obtained from profits, plus triple damages. It’s quite likely this arrogant move will backfire, as the case could bring more sympathy, not to mention sales, to Hampton Creek. Maybe it’s time for a legal defense fund too. As I recently predicted, we are likely to see more of these sorts of legal challenges as innovation collides with dinosaur food companies unwilling to get out of the way, bolstered by a regulatory system maintaining the status quo.

If you want to tell Unilever to stop the bullying, you can sign this petition, which was started by celebrity chef Andrew Zimmern, who says he preferred the taste of Just Mayo to Hellmann’s, calling it his “must have” brand, after a blind taste test. And you can download and share this document from Hampton Creek in response to the lawsuit.

Tell Unilever if the competition is making them sweat, maybe they need some more deodorant.

Michele Simon is a public health attorney with 18 years of experience in food and beverage law, the author of Appetite for Profit, president of Eat Drink Politics, and works of counsel with Foscolo and Handel, The Food Law Firm.

86 Responses to “Big Mayo Files Frivolous Lawsuit Against Eggless Competitor”

  1. Amber Chenoweth says:

    Dear Unilever,

    Your lawsuit against Hampton Creek is wasting precious money that could be spent on developing your own product which does not involve animal cruelty. People are becoming aware of the horrors that animals face unnecessarily, and are choosing to speak with their dollars. Thank you for additional spotlight you have shown on this very issue with your ridicules lawsuit. I hope that many animals lives will now be saved when people are further educated and choose Hampton Creek over your cruel products.
    For the Animals,
    Amber Chenoweth

  2. Stefanie Huschka says:

    Hampton Creek will come out on top for sure!

  3. Carrie F says:

    Instead of being a company that chooses to innovate, you have chosen to continue support, promote and profit from deplorable cruelty to animals. And instead of stepping up and doing the right thing, you choose to waste time, money and energy trying to sue a company forward thinking enough to do something better.

    I will now join the ranks of people not only buying their product and voting with my dollar, where it actually matters, but will also cease to purchase ANY products produced or sold by Unilever and any applicable subsidiaries.

    Your blatant attempt to bully here will be the first misstep in a series of misfortunate choices that will ultimately end in your companies failure in the long term.

  4. Dan Brook says:

    Big Mayo, Big Meat, and most big corps are bad news.

    The more we engage in LOVE – Local, Organic, Veg Eating – the better!

  5. Archie Quinn says:

    I actually spend a lot of time fighting big business strangle holds, but in this case the company is correct, it is not mayonnaise and is false advertising, if you went into a restaurant and ordered Oysters Kirkpatrick and got natural Oysters you would insist you had been robbed, but they are simply preservative and bacon free oysters cooked at room temperature. false is false, a chicken Kiev with garlic is not a chicken Kiev, nor is this stuff mayo at all.

    The judge should and will likely rule the same as for Beef, when pie and burger companies tried to sell mixed meat as beef, it is not and the cattle industry won.

    If they win it is precedent for the government to lie as much as they want and big business, it means GMO labeling could say anything it liked, so long as they know what it means, be careful what you wish for

    • Miriam says:

      That’s silly. Eggs an ingredient in mayo but it’s less than 20% of the mayo. So does unilver own a cookie company and are they gonna sue Hampton Creek for having cookies that have no eggs butter or milk?

    • Katie C says:

      The other instances you’re citing are not analogous. Hampton Creek Foods doesn’t call their product “eggs.” Selling “Oysters” that don’t contain oysters or “beef” that doesn’t contain beef isn’t the same as selling “mayo” that doesn’t contain eggs.

    • Karl Young says:

      If that’s really the way the law works it sounds pretty dumb to me. As long as ingredients are clearly labeled and a product name doesn’t infringe on another companies brand I don’t get what the issue is. GMO labeling seems a completely different issue – I don’t care if something calls itself GMOfree Beef and is made from textured soy protein using GMO soy beans as long those ingredients are clearly labeled (though obviously that’s an artificially extreme example and there might be some truth in advertising issue there !).

      And making a legal argument that describing something as mayonnaise requires that it has eggs sounds bizarre in the extreme. Why couldn’t some competitor to Unilever, that say has been making “mayonnaise” for longer, also argue other that the name mayonnaise really implies some ingredient that they use that Unilever doesn’t. That would sound pretty frivolous to me; people should just be able to read the label to see what’s in the, perhaps similarly described, product they’re purchasing.

      But I say this as a layman, and I assume there is some bizarre lawyerly explanation of all of this…

    • Mike Cherry says:

      I agree. Calling it mayo, which strongly implies that it is mayonnaise, is false advertising. Call it “Better Than Mayo” or something else. If it says “Just Mayo” it really ought to be mayonnaise, which by definition is an emulsification of egg, acid and oil. There’s a reason there are tons of “sandwich spreads” and “salad dressings” in addition to mayonnaise. It’s because “mayonnaise” has a specific meaning.

      “Cookie” and other terms are far broader.

      • Sorry, but it’s Just NOT Mayo. If I’d called something without eggs mayo or mayonnaise, I would have flunked out of culinary school!

      • k abraham says:

        “strongly implies” is not “says”, so legally no problem.
        Mayonnaise defined as a thick creamy sauce made from egg yolks, oil, and vinegar or lemon juice, eaten with salads, eggs, etc

        MAYO defined as
        “a county of NW Republic of Ireland”
        County mayo have more reason to complain.!

    • James says:

      I think the term ‘Mayo’ for an egg free product is fine, after all it is a condiment not an ‘egg’ product and mayonnaise is a type of dressing or base for salad dressing which is how it got started so the name mayonnaise is not definable by what ingredients it contains as many ‘dressings’ do not contain eggs.

  6. Darryl MacLeod says:

    I haven’t eaten Mayonaisse type products that contain eggs for more than 40 years. My children and grandchildren never have. We never will. Get over it.

  7. Kirsten Lassen-Smith says:

    Come on ole boys, evolve like the rest of us and go Vegan for our planet, animals and health!

  8. Markus Jensen says:

    Unilever has me thinking of setting up an organization or company to destroy them and rid them from this world.

    I want to set up a company to destroy Unilever and its products. Everyone could donate and then we can save up a shit ton and smack down on Unilever in the courts.

  9. Kat says:

    You are quite wrong. “Mayo” no more means “mayonnaise” than “grape” means the same as “grapefruit”. “Mayo” has not been defined by the FDA, but “mayonnaise” has.

    There are COUNTLESS examples to prove you wrong. For instance, here in NZ we have the “kiwi”, a native bird, and the “kiwifruit”, a small green fruit. Are you saying that these are the same thing, and that one could be sued for serving up a chopped up little bird instead of a piece of fruit in one’s fruit salad? (The kiwi bird is a protected species – you’d be in BIG trouble.)

    • Shannon says:

      You said it! I sure hope those lawyers get to see what you had to say – its’ fine line. Mayo doesn’t necessary mean mayonnaise. Therefore, no need to have eggs!

    • james says:

      This remind me of when Pillsbury, the owner of Haagen Dazs, put the squeeze on local stores selling Ben & Jerry’s back in 1984. Ben & Jerry got so much press from this foolishness that they became a national brand. Pillsbury dropped the suit, and eventually, UNILEVER bought Ben & Jerry’s. Ah, the circle of life.

      Kat is 100% correct. “Mayo” has not been defined by the FDA. And I’m sure JUST MAYO knew that when they created their brand. Should be an interesting fight. Bill Gates and the Hampton Creek investors v. Unilever.

  10. Kathi says:

    Hampton Creek could name that stuff “Poop” and people would still buy it because it is AMAZING!!!! Seriously, I can’t tell you how many times I have gone to Whole Foods specifically to buy Just Mayo, only to find it sold out – AGAIN! Go Hampton Creek!

  11. Jonathan Axel says:

    Absurd on Unilevers part. I’m not sure if they actually have tried the Just Mayo before? If they had they would know the Just Mayo actually taste more like mayonnaise then their product. Maybe Hampton Creek should be suing them!

  12. Chance says:

    I am so excited about this product because my 11 year old son is allergic to eggs, just mayo is way cheaper than veganaise. This lawsuit is bull, I hope Hampton turns around and sues them once they win this lawsuit.

  13. C K says:

    I would never buy their jars of creamed cruelty anyway. They should just wipe the egg from their faces and leave Hampton Creek alone. Just Mayo is an excellent product. Let the market decide, not corporations with expensive lawyers.

  14. Karen says:

    Unilever, I do not buy your unhealthy, bad for my body products! It would be so much better for you to spend your time and money making healthier, sustainable products, instead of harassing companies that care! Oh, and by the way, I personally met TWO of your employees who admitted Just Mayo is a better tasting product!

  15. Anastacia says:

    Threatened by your AMAZING product!

    Your company provides for those who are vegan but enjoy the taste your Just Mayo brings! As for taking space from your named competitor, well, my smallish town doesn’t carry them to begin with!

  16. Melody says:

    This is outrageous. Completely full of bullcrap. I hope justice will be served for Hampton Creek.

    Never ever will buy anything from Unilever’s food brand. #StopUnileverBullying

  17. Claudia says:

    There is a new generation now, that learned how bad animals are treated and exploited by humans. We come from a place of compassion and anything that does not involve animal cruelty is welcome!

  18. Josie says:

    There have been other vegan – type mayonnaise products on the market for years. Did they take every one of them to court?? Why now? Why this product? Because it’s the only one that finally threatens their bottom line. They can’t single Just Mayo out, they need to go after every single other vegan mayo to sound remotely legitimate. This entire case is idiotic and a waste of energy, time, emotion and air!

  19. Zach says:

    Looking at the label, it does not say egg free on the front where it lists the other items that it is” free ” of. That looks a little deceptive to me. I think they would have a better case if they listed ” egg free” or put a small “mayonnaise substitute” label on the front. Whether you agree with it or not, there is a culinary history, and standard of what mayonnaise is.

    • Salvador Dalai Llama says:

      It says “egg-free” on the left side of the label–can’t see the text in the pic with this story. They probably ought to put that more prominently on the label somehow, but it is on there. Unilever’s suit–ALL profits and triple damages? Please. Absolutely uncalled for.

    • Carolyn says:

      Zach, it does say “Egg-Free” on the front label, and it does not call itself “Mayonnaise”. The noun “Mayo” is not regulated by the FDA.

  20. Brian Nicholas says:

    I want to thank you for this lawsuit against Hampton Creek. Since I am against bullying of all species, it prompted me to find out what brands you promote and to stop using all of them! The website was especially helpful. I am sure Hampton Creek will enjoy the free advertising you are providing. Hope the lawsuit lasts a long time with lots of media coverage.

    • Clari says:

      Oh no, Magnums are on the list! Can’t stop using those.. But I did not realize they have the NERVE to manufacture two butter substitutes, Promise and I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter. They actually have the term “butter” deceptively placed on the label. Hypocritical would be a nice way of characterizing them.

    • Vegan in Vegas says:

      Whew. I have never bought one of their products for the last 20 years. Was worried that one or more of the vegan food manufacturers was owned by them.

  21. Wallace says:

    Let’s set aside how great the product actually is for a moment and focus on the facts:
    1. The label is deceptive – an image of an egg in a product that contains no eggs.
    2. The name is deceptive – in the American food market, “mayo” is synonymous with “mayonnaise”, and a consumer looking at the product on the shelf would of course be confused and think they were buying mayonnaise.

    The manufacturer is deliberately using a deceptive name and label. If it were called “pea spread” and the label showed only a pea pod or sprout there would be no issue.

    It is up to the manufacturer to educate consumers on the superiority of their product with truthful labeling.

    • Michael says:

      There is not an image of an egg. The image quite clearly represents the absence of egg with a plant as its replacement. Far from being deceptive, the labeling quite clearly describes the product–an egg free, plant based product.

      • Bryan says:

        Looks like an egg + a plant to me. Mayonnaise is egg + plant oil + an acid. It looks like a perfect logo for real Mayonnaise, and seems totally deceptive to me.

        If Just Mayo is such a great product, they can and should compete without the deception.

        Miracle Whip can do it. So can Just Mayo.

        • Carolyn says:

          Dear goddess, I cannot believe anyone is wasting the planet’s time with this. Holding a jar of Just Mayo in my hands now, and re-reading the label I have read many times. It is very simple and informative, Bryan. Maybe you should read it. It says “Just Mayo, Hampton Creek” in the center of the label, it says “Non-GMO, Cholesterol-Free, Gluten-Free, Egg-Free” to the immediate left of the central portion of the label, and it says “Soy-Free, Dairy-Free, Lactose-Free, Kosher” to the immediate right of the central portion of the label (this is on the 8 oz. jar, but the 30 oz. jar is similar). Nowhere on the label does it say mayonnaise, the noun regulated by the FDA. There is no deception. Miracle Whip does not call itself mayonnaise either, so not sure how you created this drama that Hampton Creek is competing through deception. However it has been very valuable for me to find out about this waste of the planet’s time and resources by Unilever, as I will be diligently working to eliminate as much of their products from my life as is practicable.

          • Dave says:

            Using the FDA Rules to say there is definition for mayo is not a defense post Pom v Coke. Coke was following the FDA rules for their pomegranate blueberry flavored blend of 5 juices that was also sited in the story.

          • michele says:

            Hi Dave. I am familiar with the case and don’t think it’s the same. There, Coke argued that FDA rules preempted Pom from suing. Here the company is saying there is no definition for the word they are using, mayo. I don’t see a preemption issue.

  22. Elaine says:

    Because of a frivolous lawsuit I know have Just Mayo on my radar. Look forward to trying it. I always read labels and ingredients so I would not be tricked into thinking the product contained eggs due to the label. I don’t judge a book by it’s cover.

  23. Brad says:

    Unilever, why didn’t you ever offer me an eggless product? Never mind the vegan alternative, or the face that this is actually a sustainable product…some of us actually have allergies that prevent us from eating eggs.

    You didn’t do the work, you didn’t do the research, you didn’t improve your product… you got lazy.. .and you got beat!

    Suck it up, Unilever!

    and to everyone who reads this post, be sure to go sign the PETITION at

  24. veg4life says:

    I believe that mayonnaise is really just emulsified oil with some mustard and vinegar added. In the ‘traditional’ recipe, the egg is used as the emulsifier. That’s it. Hampton Creek used something else.

    Unilever, you’re looking ridiculous….

    • Carolyn says:

      veg4life, that’s what home chefs who do not choose to use eggs do, is create an emulsification with those simple ingredients (plus a plant protein such as tofu or soy milk). To make a shelf stable product Hampton Creek includes the pea protein and vegetable starch. I am waiting for the day when Unilever decides that it is unlawful for home chefs to create their own emulsified condiments, and sues the rest of us. Bring it on, Unilever.

  25. Hilary Aulando says:

    Dear Unilever – your bully-boy tactics do nothing but alienate consumers from buying your products. In a free-market economy a little competition is a good thing. Since when does one of the worlds largest consumer goods corporations need protection from ‘the little guy’?
    If this suit isn’t dropped, I can guarantee you that I will do everything in my power to never purchase another product from one of your companies.

  26. Marcus says:

    Just re-name it to Faux Mayo. That should work. Buyers will buy it and Unilever will pout. And probably formulate another lawsuit.

  27. Lia Wilbourn says:

    Hampton Creek is huge now, so if you try to sue them with this ridiculous claim, it’s the beginning of the end because you will be exposed to be afraid of the new plant-based revolution. It is only going to get bigger so you may as well go with the times.

  28. Donna says:

    Does Unilever not understand the meaning of CAPITALISM???? I certainly hope there isn’t a judge that would even consider giving them the time of day to try to stop a company from trying to be competitive in an environment that supports and encourages competition. What a joke…

  29. Rosie says:

    Eggless mayo is nothing new… I’ve grown up on the stuff since the 70s. Hampton Creek Foods is the first one doing any decent marketing and is getting it on the shelves at Target and Walmart, which the other brands (name brand and store brands) have not. Hellman’s can chill the F out.

  30. L2Y2 says:

    Seriously, Unilever? You can’t take a little competition? Just Mayo is healthier and tastes great. You also don’t offer a product for vegans or people who are allergic to eggs. Develop your own product to compete with Hampton Creek in a fair market. Don’t bully the competition.

  31. Rudy says:

    Just added Unilever to my boycott list in Norway.

    Their products, including Lipton, Knorr, Carte D’or, Maizena, Maille and Hellman’s are off the shopping list.

  32. Klaus says:

    Has anyone read the court filing? It makes perfect sense. Just Mayo is not mayonnaise but an imitation spread. It’s pretty basic stuff. Click the link to the filing and read these it for yourself instead of letting some blogger tell you how to feel.

  33. Alex says:

    So, this definitely makes Unilever look like it’s run by a bunch of failures. If you’re competition is coming out on top, it’s because you need to improve your product. Some people can’t have eggs, and you know this. Some people are allergic to eggs. Can’t people have the option to eggless mayo? Oh, wait. I’m sorry. Capitalism still exist.

  34. Sara Katz says:

    Oh Unilever. There are numerous other brands out there that use the word “mayo” which are egg free. You can’t just pick and choose the one you’re most scared of because it happens to be denting your profit margin and go after that one! If there is this “industry standard” when it comes to using the word mayo then why is this only an issue now, in this one case, and not in every case?

    They should take this a lesson that people want and demand ethical change. But I guess the world ethical isn’t exactly a part of their vocabulary.

  35. systematix says:

    It’s to be expected from mega corporations. Should anyone be surprised? Haagen Dazs did the same thing to Ben & Jerry’s over a decade ago but B&J fought back and won. What pisses me off the most is how alternative food companies that we love have sold out to the major corps such as Burts’ Bees now owned by Clorox etc.

  36. Seth says:

    I hate to say this but Unilever has a good case.

    The packaging of Just Mayo is definitely misleading. Popular opinion may favor this product – I sure do – but the legal system will not.

    You will see them change the label soon folks.

  37. Joan Startzman says:

    Just Mayo is an AMAZING product. Way better taste than unilevers brand and as an added bonus it is healthier and earth friendly. Unilever needs to step out of the dark ages and stop whining about being outdone. I won’t be buying any of their products anymore, if they don’t have faith in them,why should I?

  38. Tonya Padilla says:

    Finally, a product that is healthy, affordable and sustainable. Of course the agro giants have to step in and bully them, as well as all of us. Thank you HAMPTON CREEK for your dedication in offering all of us alternative choices.Going to buy some more Just Mayo today!

  39. Brenda Sue says:

    Thanks to Unilever I discovered a great new product, Just Mayo!

  40. Bailey says:

    I just called Hellmanns and said who are you to sue a Veg company that doesn’t have eggs in their mayo are you kidding, this is Big Business Bullying, if Hellmanns didn’t want eggs in their mayo they should of thought of it, leave you all alone…………

  41. Christa Ziegelbein says:

    Best mayo hands down!

  42. Kathleen Parker says:

    Dear Unilever: I do buy “Just Mayo”. Why? Because it DOESN’T contain eggs! I’m not confused about their product…I was thrilled to find it. You deserve nothing and should stop thinking consumers are stupid.

  43. Daniel says:

    A rational person will see that Unilever’s case is legally sound. Mayo is a colloquialism for mayonnaise, any person saying/hearing mayo knows exactly what they are talking about. Regardless of the quality of the product “Just Mayo” is not just Mayo and it is using deliberately false advertising. Just as Miracle Whip is not able to brand itself as Mayo neither should Just Mayo.

  44. Jen says:

    Im all for this egg free and hopefully “cleaner” brand of mayo, provided its GMO free, and I agree its not defining itself as mayonnaise by the name.I do have to ask, why on earth do they depict an egg on the front of the jar?

    While these big companies want to sue them for claiming they are misusing the name, then they should first set the example and disclose what kind of GMO products and chemicals are used in their own production that they hide and lie about from us consumers daily…..We are the driving force behind their company. Its our money they are using to lie to us. Time to give them less control.

  45. Susan Placek says:

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
    Not only was your article hilarious, it sums it all up!
    Loved it! Time to put the bullies into their place and THEIR CRAP out of the shelves.

  46. vegangsterARNP says:

    why not also sue earth balance mayo, or vegenaise? hmmmmmm? this is so fishy to me…

    • Jim Main says:

      Vegenaise clearly has vegan/vegetarian in the name and obviously contains no eggs. Earth Balance would be a closer case, but doesn’t imply it’s a traditional egg-oil emulsion nearly as much as “Just Mayo” does. They may also be just picking the easiest target to re-establish egg as a necessary ingredient, before egg-free products start outselling older egg products.Personally I’d just rather force a descriptive term, like ‘whipped oil sauce’ with any product more than 50% emulsified oil in it.

    • Vegan in Vegas says:

      Don’t forget about Miso Mayo.

  47. cc says:

    Have all the grown ups died at unilever & the company is being run by infants ? wa wa wa ! simply mayo is fabulously delicious , I never liked mayonnaise , the missing eggs let the flavor shine thru, not to mention safer considering at pick nicks & other gatherings the condiments sit out of fridge all day & some one always gets sick from the eggs in the mayonnaise . The egg on their label is in the back ground of the plant leaves ,which means eggs are being left behind,plants are taking over ,YAY !

  48. Frivolous lawsuit? Damned skippy!

  49. Meggan Gray says:

    Thanks Unilever. I had never heard of this Mayo, now I can’t wait to try it. Don’t you have better ways of spending your time and money, like putting GMO labels on your products. Who’s being sneaky and misleading??? Clean up your own act Unilever!

  50. Archie Quinn says:

    All the Hampton creek people would you like an investor to put your pension into farming? then to find out it had nothing to do with land, but was a slimy catfish farm in the Mekong delta the most polluted river on the planet (and they do have fish farms there you buy it as Basa in coles and woolworths) Mayo may not be the word mayonnaise but it is as misleading as saying investing pensions in farms to find out there is no land to sell when it fails. The law has very clear rules on civil suits, they must be founded in common law, and one of those is accepted practice, and mayonnaise is called mayo as an accepted practice, the FDA has nothing to do with it. Mayonnaise is not an American owned patented or controlled item, it is a chefs recipe for a sauce that “has eggs” if you alter it slightly it is Bearnaise and hollandaise and so on, to remove the eggs or make any variance of the prime ingredients says it is not mayonnaise. You have 100 million chefs against you from the outset, change the name of it is so great. It probably contains canola oil that is the cause of obesity around the world anyway, monounsaturates slow your metabolism and its in everything, probably in the hampton farm vegetable oil “mayo”

  51. Jim Main says:

    Unlike other egg-free mayo products, there’s nothing in the name to suggest it doesn’t contain egg, it’s got an actual image of an egg and the product name clearly visible, and nothing else. The name contains the French egg & “yo” of yolk, unlike the original sauce name “Mahonesa” which indicates region so it contains the historical melding of egg into the name.

    While I want to support egg-free products, I also don’t like misleading names. Maybe the abbreviated mayo could become a more generic than mayonnaise (oil emulsified in egg), but putting an egg on the cover really hurts that case even. Just change the name to make it clear.

  52. Iggy Dalrymple says:

    Hellman’s is right to sue.

    The name “Mayo” is misleading and I predict the court will agree.

    Mayo is a poor choice of names and I would possibly have avoided it in fear of it containing eggs.

    They should call it Mayo-Not.

  53. StefHuschka says:

    Let’s shut down these massive corporations and make way for the REAL innovators: companies like Hampton Creek!! Kudos to a company who stands their ground and isn’t intimidated by anything, especially a frivolous lawsuit!

  54. Mimi says:

    I dunno, I’m vegetarian, and only eat eggs from my own three backyard very pampered hens, but I can see a case for claiming that mayo should have eggs–show me a recipe in a non-vegan cookbook that doesn’t have eggs (there probably is one somewhere, for the egg allergic or some such). Having said that, I can’t see suing over it and hope it is tossed out as frivolous. I will buy some of this stuff (spread?) just to support them.

  55. James says:

    I should probably clarify my point: Mayonnaise is a recipe and you can change, modify or adjust a recipe to some degree as long as the finished product is essentially the same in taste, form or function. Eggs are just an emulsifier to bind the ingredients together and if you can substitute another emulsifier and get a product of the same type this should still be called ‘mayonnaise’. You can make brownies or cakes without eggs and they are still the same product.

  56. myk says:

    I suppose bringing out the Just Mayo has not “brought out the best.” in this company’s business ethics.

  57. Mahendra Palesha says:

    There are two ways to move ahead in life. Either make yourself big enough by your good work, or by pulling down someone’s legs. The Lever is following the bad way. it is like in many countries you cannot call almond or soy based Milk as Milk. funny & strange.

Leave a Reply


Join Email List

Speaking Requests

Media Requests

Contact Michele Simon:


  • 2016 (4)
  • 2015 (20)
  • 2014 (41)
  • 2013 (67)
  • 2012 (70)
  • 2011 (53)
  • 2010 (49)