Consumer products

Recovery water healing claim sounds like snake oil

rrw

NFL player makes claim regarding the healing properties of fancy, “sciencey” nano-bubble water. Russell Wilson Says Recovery Water Healed His Head Injury from NFC Title Game  At one point in the story, Rodrick mentions a moment where Wilson claimed Reliant Recovery Water—a sports recovery drink in which he is a personal investor—helped him recover from…

Should sky lanterns be banned?

Floating orange balls of light, preparing for take off.

Chinese lanterns, also called sky lanterns, are small balloons made of paper that fly because of heated air from a small fire underneath. These devices are a prime source of “UFO” sightings since they move with the winds aloft and can accelerate unexpectedly but also remain seemingly stationary for a bit, confusing the witness. They…

Asparagus watergate

asparagus

News Driblet: Has Whole Foods become “a bizarre religious cult”? Whole Foods tried to sell Los Angelenos actual asparagus in a bottle of water—for $6 Source: Asparagus water: This week’s overpriced yuppie Whole Foods diet trend garbage – Salon.com Yuck. The product has been removed. Tip: Bob M.

Kevin Trudeau must pay back millions of dollars

trudeau weightlossbook

A tentative plan was announced to provide refunds for hundreds of thousands of people who bought Kevin Trudeau’s silly diet book. Source: Judge may order refunds for buyers of Trudeau weight-loss book – Chicago Tribune The plan greenlighted by U.S. District Judge Robert Gettleman calls for the Federal Trade Commission to send several rounds of checks to…

Procera AVH memory-enhancing supplement BUSTED for deceptive claims

supplements

If it sounds to good to be true… yada yada yada. Yay for the FTC but something tells me these settlement amounts are not quite high enough to act as deterrents for companies pushing useless supplements. The marketers of a dietary supplement called Procera AVH will relinquish $1.4 million under settlements resolving Federal Trade Commission…

New study from tainted author with conflicting interests on GMOs

mouse-lab-rat

Back in September of 2012, French scientists led by Gilles-Eric Seralini of the University of Caen and colleagues said that they did a study that showed rats fed on a diet containing a Roundup-resistant maize variety or given water with Roundup at levels permitted in the United States, died earlier than those on a standard diet. The study…

Wi-fi marketing claim in China aimed at people who fear radiation

wifi

An obvious case of devious advertising can misinform consumers in a big way. Two Chinese tech firms have clashed over a new wireless router with a special setting for pregnant women. Source: ‘Pregnancy wi-fi’ router causes controversy in China Qihoo 360 unveiled the device, an upgrade to an existing product, which has three settings it…

Etsy will be turned into a newt

spells

In the fall of 2012, Ebay took a stand against the sale of paranormal products. Though some people still tried to sell ghosts and “haunted” objects. Now, Etsy, the online marketplace for handcrafted goods has offended their community of supernatural vendors by shutting down accounts that sell spells and hexes. Witches are furious at Etsy for banning…

How do chickens with eight legs cross the road? Litigiously.

mutant-chicken

KFC (formerly Kentucky Fried Chicken) has said enough to the parade of crazy rumors about their food and have sought legal satisfaction from Chinese companies that promote hoaxes that damage their finger-lickin’ good reputation. KFC sues Chinese companies for online rumors about its food Restaurant operator KFC said Monday it filed a lawsuit against three companies…

How low can you go: Potentially dangerous cancer cures promoted in “secret” presentation

miracle cure

Black salve and Miracle Mineral Solution (MMS) are touted as fantastic cancer treatments “they” don’t want you to know about. Pushers of these items must avoid the law that prohibits them from saying these are “cures” but they can’t avoid the media. The Good Thinking Society in the UK went to a conference held on…

Support free speech in the public interest: Anti-SLAPP act proposed

slapp

It’s a shame that outspoken bloggers have to have lawyers at their disposal because of threats to take down pieces critical of some charlatan. This week, there is a new push to support anti-SLAPP lawsuits. Lawsplainer: The Proposed Federal Anti-SLAPP Act: What It Would Do, Why It’s Important | Popehat Last week, two members of…

Neuro-tech patents increase

brain

Companies are taking out a huge amount of patents related to reading brainwaves, according to analysis, with a range of different applications. Source: Patents for technology to read people’s minds hugely increasing / The Independent Fewer than 400 neuro-technology related patents were filed between 2000-2009. But in 2010 alone that reached 800, and last year…

Panera changing ingredients to be more “healthy”

Let me have one of the cranberry-orange scones.

Panera is the latest company to declare they are going to make their food sound healthier. While they portray it terms of simplicity and customer demands, really, it’s a marketing gimmick and may end up disappointing the consumer. Panera CEO says ‘no’ to unacceptable ingredients – Fortune The restaurant chain is doing away with or reformulating…

Yet another illegal stimulant in dietary supplements

supplements

Dietary supplements contain potentially harmful substances. Gee, I’m starting to sound like a broken record, just repeating the same thing… FDA warns about another illegal stimulant in supplements | Reuters. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning companies to stop selling dietary supplements that include a stimulant known as DMBA, the latest in a…

Have your say to the FDA on homeopathic products!

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The US FDA will hold a public hearing on homeopathic products. What does this mean? It means the agency is considering adjusting the current enforcement policies to reflect changes in the homeopathic product marketplace over the last approximately 25 years. That sounds like a PLAN and a great opportunity! Homeopathic Product Regulation: Evaluating FDA’s Regulatory…

FTC cites melanoma apps and mosquito repellent wristbands as deceptive

mosquito bands

The US Federal Trade Commission has lowered the boom on two deceptive consumer products. First, unsupported claims that a phone app could detect skin cancer. FTC Cracks Down on Marketers of “Melanoma Detection” Apps. The Federal Trade Commission has challenged marketers for deceptively claiming their mobile apps could detect symptoms of melanoma, even in its…

Supplement industry is manufacturing controversy over NY action

vitamins_fruit

Recall earlier in February, the New York state Attorney General took some unprecedented action against retailers selling dietary supplements. Well, the supplement industry folks didn’t like this too much and, as they will, they took up a social media campaign to Twitter-harass the officials. Tim Farley found out that they were less than forthright with…

NY takes serious action against dietary supplement retailers for misleading advertising

supplements

We’ve posted a lot on the effect of bad regulatory policy for dietary supplements. Here again is an example of why the law that allows these products to be put up for sale without proper consumer protection is just an all-around flawed idea. AG: Stores sell mislabeled herbal supplements | wivb.com. New York State wants certain herbal…

There’s DNA in food?! That’s disgusting!

dna

This story is going around: Mandatory labels on foods containing DNA? 80% of Americans support that. According to a recent survey by the Oklahoma State University Department of Agricultural Economics, over 80% of Americans said they would support “mandatory labels on foods containing DNA,” roughly the same number that support the mandatory labeling of GMO foods…