Weekend reading: health claims in food advertising.
Chefs Best has issued a short, handy guide to making health claims in advertising that will stand up to the Federal Trade Commission’s scrutiny.
The guide divides advertising claims into three categories.
How can you tell if your claim is OK?
First, consult with competent legal counsel. The FTC advertising substantiation policy states, “Objective claims
for products represent, explicitly or by implication, that the advertiser has a reasonable basis supporting these
claims”. It goes on to state, a “reasonable basis” means “objective evidence that supports the claim” and “at a
minimum, an advertiser must have the level of evidence that it says it has.” “If the ad is not specific, the FTC looks
at several factors to determine what level of proof is necessary, including what experts in the field think is needed
to support the claim.”
Good luck with that. The FTC generally goes along with what the FDA says about health claims.
As for those of us who are the target of health claims: it’s best to remember that health claims are about marketing, not health.