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On the 26 August, 1928, May Donoghue and a friend were at a café in Glasgow (Scotland). Donoghue's companion ordered and paid for her drink. The cafe purchased the product from a distributor that purchased it from Stevenson. The ginger beer came in a Dark bottle, and the contents were not visible from the outside. Donoghue drank some of the contents and her friend lifted the bottle to pour the remainder of the ginger beer into the tumbler. The remains of a snail in a state of decomposition dropped out of the bottle into the tumbler. She was unsuccessful at trial and appealed the decision to the House of Lords. Finally, her claim was successful.


  1. Does the defendant owe a duty of care to the plaintiff being as there is no contractual term ?


Appeal allowed.

Manufacturers owe the final consumer of their product a duty of care (at least in the instance where the goods cannot be inspected between manufacturing and consumption). There need not be a contractual relationship, or privity, in order for the final consumer to sue in negligence. It is the responsibility of the producer and not the fault of consumer.