The supplement world is a growing industry that is expected to reach over $30 billion dollars within the next few years. Internet sales are dramatically increasing health supplement sales since buyers from all over the world can purchase any supplement with just the click of a few buttons.
However, it’s safe to say that shady marketers and businesses are taking advantage of the huge demand by selling low quality supplements. Consumers are increasingly becoming frustrated with the marketing practices of businesses yet government agencies often have trouble going after people violating laws due to jurisdiction issues.
While advertising has been the subject of most of the FTC’s efforts, there is an increasingly amount of pressure for the FTC, the FDA, and other governments to police supplements. Specifically, customers want to feel that the supplement they are buying is actually what it says, not just a filler ingredient.
A lot of consumers became alarmed once Consumer Reports and other independent reports found that a lot of supplements contain less of an active ingredient that what is marked on the label.
As of right now, the FDA does not require approval for supplements. This means that companies can essentially put whatever they want in their supplements provided it is on the label. Obviously this needs to change so that consumers know that they are actually putting in what they say is in their products labels for the safety of all involved and looking to purchase.
This is why websites like SupplementPolice.com have emerged and are taking a stand at delivering credible news and updates about the internet’s latest and hottest products circulating for your benefit.
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has been waging a war on shady marketers for years now, especially involving either bodybuilding or weight loss supplements.
Many marketers have ads that use well-known celebrities like Kim Kardashian or The Rock on their advertising pages. These ads claim that these celebrities endorse the product and often times they claim the supplements were used by the celebrity to achieve such results. We have seen this many times before on countless garcinia cambogia or forskolin offers available all over the web.
Advertising like this is highly illegal because it:
• Is blatantly false advertising
• Misinterprets a celebrity endorsement
• Violates the image/character of the celebrity
• Often infringes on a copyright or trademark
Using a celebrity isn’t the only issue with supplements right now. The FDA is putting an increasingly amount of pressure on health companies with the health claims they make.
This pressure is coming from consumers who have seen health claims like:
• Lose 30 pounds in a month!
• The magic fruit to prevent cancer!
• Gain 20 pounds of muscle in 6 weeks!
• Eliminate wrinkles and fine lines forever!
While some of these examples are clearly more exaggerated than others, the FDA is stepping in to hold companies accountable for their health claims. Therefore, if you’re creating a new health supplement, you better have the evidence to back it up. Otherwise, you could be looking at a healthy decrease in your paycheck in the form of a fine from the FTC.
The Senate and Dr. Oz
Things in the supplement are getting so messy that the Senate recently grilled Dr. Oz for his involvement in many popular weight loss scams. While Dr. Oz claims he does not promote any specific brand or company’s products, he is often the cause of the hype for such products.
For example, Dr. Oz has called “Garcinia cambogia” a “miracle fat burner.” He called green coffee extract “magic beans to melt fat.” While these supplements may be legitimate, the exaggerations by Dr. Oz lead open the door for companies and shady marketers to take advantage of the hype created by Dr. Oz to sell consumers low quality supplements. Another classic example of wrong information can be found with forskolin or coleus forskohlii. This product has brought mischievous marketers and savvy schemers alike out of the word-work to try and dupe hopeful weight loss seekers. Be mindful of this before you ever decide to try any supplement, let alone garcinia or forskolin.
The supplement industry is rapidly growing but the legal and ethical procedures and responsibilities are constantly changing. In the future, it’s clear that companies will be held accountable for their actions and claims and hopefully the supplement industry will be cleaned up within the next few years.