POM Wonderful Receives FTC Complaint over Health Claims

September 29, 2010

POM Wonderful (Los Angeles), the makers of POM Wonderful juice and POMx supplements, has been issued an administrative complaint from the FTC over misleading and unsubstantiated health claims on its products.

POM Wonderful (Los Angeles), the makers of POM Wonderful juice and POMx supplements, has been issued an administrative complaint from the FTC over misleading and unsubstantiated health claims on its products.

On Monday, the FTC reported that claims like "SUPER HEALTH POWERS! ... 100% PURE POMEGRANATE JUICE...Backed by $25 million in medical research. Proven to fight for cardiovascular, prostate and erectile health," would not go unchecked. Additional claims were made on the above three health conditions.

The company was publishing the claims in a variety of media, including national publications, the company’s websites, on bus stops, billboards, product tags, and in customer newsletters, the agency reports.

"Any consumer who sees POM Wonderful products as a silver bullet against disease has been misled," said David Vladeck, director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection. "When a company touts scientific research in its advertising, the research must squarely support the claims made. Contrary to POM Wonderful's advertising, the available scientific information does not prove that POM Juice or POMx effectively treats or prevents these illnesses."

Among other provisions, the FTC’s complaint proposes that the company fisrt receive pre-approval from FDA before using any health claim indicating one of its products can treat or prevent a serious disease.