Suits by consumers in three states who challenge General Mills’ claim that Cheerios can lower cholesterol and cut the risk of cancer, were consolidated Wednesday in federal court in New Jersey.

The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation ordered four cases — three from California and one from New York — transferred to U.S. District Judge Peter Sheridan in Newark, who is presiding over a similar suit. New Jersey was the venue of choice for General Mills, while plaintiffs lawyers wanted to remain in their home states.

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