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CORN PRODUCTS REFINING COMPANY v. EDDY ET AL.

April 14, 1919

CORN PRODUCTS REFINING COMPANY
v.
EDDY ET AL.



ERROR TO THE SUPREME COURT OF THE STATE OF KANSAS

White, McKenna, Holmes, Day, Van Devanter, Pitney, McReynolds, Brandeis, Clarke

Author: Pitney

[ 249 U.S. Page 428]

 MR. JUSTICE PITNEY delivered the opinion of the court.

Plaintiff in error (plaintiff in the original action) is a corporation which manufactures in the State of Illinois a proprietary table syrup composed of 85 per cent. corn syrup or glucose, 10 per cent. molasses, and 5 per cent. sorghum, and sells it under the name of "Mary Jane" in cans labeled as follows:

"5 Pounds Net Weight.

Mary Jane.

Reg. U.S. Pat. Off.

[ 249 U.S. Page 429]

     Mary Jane is guaranteed by Corn Products Refining Co. to comply with the Food and Drugs Act, June 30, 1906. Registered under serial number 2317.

Mary Jane. A Table Syrup Prepared from Corn Syrup, Molasses and Pure Country Sorghum. Contains Sulphur Dioxide.

M'f'd by Corn Products Refining Co.

General Offices -- New York, U.S.A."

Prior to the beginning of the action plaintiff had agents and representatives employed in soliciting orders for this syrup from wholesale merchants in the State of Kansas, the orders being filled by shipping the required quantity of the syrup in interstate commerce in the original sealed cans with original labels attached. Defendants, who are the members of the State Board of Health of Kansas, deeming "Mary Jane" to be misbranded in several particulars within the meaning of the Food and Drugs Law of that State (c. 266, Kans. Sess. Laws, 1907, as amended by c. 184, Laws 1909; embodied in c. 35, Kans. Gen. Stats. 1909; c. 32, Kans. Gen. Stats. 1915), and regulations adopted by the Board under authority of that law, notified plaintiff's agents and representatives and other persons selling and dealing in "Mary Jane" syrup that unless plaintiff complied with Regulation 6 of the State Board by attaching in a conspicuous place on the outside of each can sold or offered for sale within the State a label with the word "compound" printed upon it, and stating definitely the percentage of each ingredient of which the syrup was composed, they would be arrested and prosecuted. Similar warnings were communicated to wholesale and retail dealers who were and long had been selling this syrup in Kansas under the original brand and label.

Plaintiff brought an equitable action against the members of the board of health in one of the district courts of the State; setting up the pertinent facts, alleging that ...


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