Vegetarian's lawsuit over beef tallow at Buffalo Wild Wings is dismissed

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A federal judge on Friday dismissed a proposed class-action lawsuit by a New York vegetarian who accused Buffalo Wild Wings Inc of failing to disclose that it cooked french fries and other “non-meat” items in beef fat.

U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan said the plaintiff Alexa Borenkoff did not show how the chain’s use of beef tallow affected the “economic value” of the fries and mozzarella sticks she bought at two restaurants.

The judge said this meant Borenkoff’s alleged loss was limited to what she paid, which was not an “actual injury” under a New York law targeting deceptive business practices, despite her being “frustrated” that her expectations were not met.

Michael Braunstein, a lawyer for Borenkoff, declined immediate comment, saying he was reviewing the decision.

Francis Riley, a lawyer representing Buffalo Wild Wings, said he was “very satisfied” with the decision.

Restaurants often face lawsuits over their ingredients and cooking methods.

Borenkoff has said the issue is not limited to vegetarians, and that people with religious restrictions, such as kosher diets, also care about how food is cooked and served.

Buffalo Wild Wings recently had more than 1,250 restaurants nationwide.

The Minneapolis-based chain agreed in November to a $2.4 billion takeover by Arby’s Restaurant Group Inc, which is controlled by an affiliate of Roark Capital Group.

The case is Borenkoff v Buffalo Wild Wings Inc et al, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 16-08532.

Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York, Editing by Rosalba O’Brien