Every parent dreads when their kid gets sick and can't go to school or daycare. Because it means that the parent is grounded at home, too -- spending their day serving up chicken noodle soup rather than getting some work done.
So it is no surprise that food makers would have the clever idea of marketing products that promise to boost the immunity of kids. Nestle has tried to cash on fears of sick days with a shake called BOOST Kid Essentials. It rolled out the product with a bunch of claims about its magical effects. The problem is that these claims aren't backed up by research.
Now the Federal Trade Commission has finally moved to stop this deception. In an agreement just finalized this week with the FTC (see the full text below) Nestle says that it will:
- stop claiming that BOOST Kid Essentials will reduce the risk of colds, flu, and other upper respiratory tract infections unless the claim is approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
- stop claiming that BOOST will reduce children’s sick-day absences and the duration of acute diarrhea in children up to age 13, unless the claims are true and backed by at least two well-designed human clinical studies.
- not make any claims about the health benefits, performance, or efficacy of any probiotic or nutritionally complete drinks that it sells at retail, unless the claims are true and backed by competent and reliable scientific evidence. It also bars the company from misrepresenting any tests or studies.