The United States Food and Drug Administration False Advertising

The United States Food and Drug Administration is the oldest consumer protection agency in the United States. The agency was not officially known as the FDA until 1930, but its regulatory functions began with the... more +
The United States Food and Drug Administration is the oldest consumer protection agency in the United States. The agency was not officially known as the FDA until 1930, but its regulatory functions began with the passage of the 1906 Pure Food and Drugs Act. The agency is charged with protecting the integrity of the nation's food supply and cosmetic products, as well as monitoring the safety and efficacy of drugs, medical devices, and biological products.  less -
News & Analysis as of

Ninth Circuit Revives “All Natural” Label Class Action, but Affirms Decertification of Damages Class

In an unpublished decision that is significant for both shoppers and consumer food companies, the Ninth Circuit recently reversed a district court’s ruling that the label “All Natural Fruit” is not likely to deceive...more

When the Strength of the Facts Cannot be Lifted – SDNY Dismisses Muscle Maker Slack-Fill Class Action

The Southern District of New York recently dismissed a putative class action against Cytosport, the maker of Muscle Milk protein powder. The plaintiff, Orlando Bautista, alleged that he bought a container of Muscle Milk...more

Update on Second Circuit Ruling in Church & Dwight v. SPD Swiss Precision Diagnostics “Weeks Estimator” Home Pregnancy Test...

Last month we summarized the Second Circuit’s important decision in a dispute between plaintiff-appellee Church & Dwight and its principal competitor, defendant-appellant SPD Swiss Precision Diagnostics, concerning SPD’s...more

Dole’s “All Natural” Description On Certain Fruit Products Could Mislead Reasonable Consumers

A recent decision from the Ninth Circuit has highlighted the uncertainty that exists in the food product market about the use and definition of “All Natural” in labeling and advertising. In Brazil v. Dole Packaged Foods,...more

Second Circuit Affirms Ruling that SPD Swiss Precision Diagnostics Falsely Advertised Clearblue Weeks Estimator Home Pregnancy...

In an important recent false advertising decision in a suit brought by home pregnancy test manufacturer Church & Dwight against its principal competitor SPD Swiss Precision Diagnostics, a Second Circuit panel unanimously...more

FTC Issues Long-Awaited Enforcement Policy on OTC Homeopathic Drugs

We reported a few weeks ago about a new warning from FDA related to the safety of certain teething-related, non-prescription homeopathic drug products, and in that post we mentioned that both FDA and the Federal Trade...more

Check the Box to Avoid Food & Beverage Packaging Litigation

Shagha Tousi, a partner in Nutter’s Litigation Department and a member of the firm’s Business Litigation and Product Liability and Toxic Tort Litigation practice groups, addressed product packaging litigation in the food and...more

Naturally Misleading? Ninth Circuit Keeps “All Natural” Fruit Labeling Dispute Alive

Does a food label advertising a product as “all natural fruit” mislead consumers when that product contains artificial preservatives? That is the question presented in Brazil v. Dole Food Co. Inc., which the Court of Appeals...more

Don’t Forget About FTC Compliance: Substantiating Claims to Avoid Misleading Consumers

Life sciences companies regularly review their labeling and promotional materials to ensure compliance with Food and Drug Administration requirements. FDA makes its Warning Letters publicly available, and failure to correct...more

De-certifiably Natural – Ninth Circuit Finds “All Natural” Label May be Misleading While Upholding Class Decertification

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently reversed in part and affirmed in part a Northern District of California ruling concerning the “All Natural Fruit” labeling on Dole’s packaged fruit products. Brazil v. Dole Packaged...more

To Your Health: FDA Redefining the Term “Healthy” on Food Labels

On September 27, 2016, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that it has begun a public process to redefine the term “healthy” on food labels. As part of the public process, the FDA is soliciting input...more

Advertising Law - October 2016 #2

No Shades of Gray in Order Banning Supplement Claims - In a case based on a referral from the National Advertising Division, the Federal Trade Commission obtained summary judgment and a final order against an advertiser...more

A Step in the Right Direction: FDA Says It Will Refine Regulations on 'Healthy' Claims for Food

FDA recently announced that it will take a second look at its “healthy” regulations, and it is soliciting public comments on a dozen or so topics. Walk down any aisle at the grocery store and you will find foods...more

Advertising Law - October 2016

Suit Over Block Voting on Reviews Moves Forward - A Lanham Act suit brought by a competitor over a company's efforts to minimize negative consumer reviews will move forward, a Utah federal court judge has...more

Ninth Circuit: Food Manufacturers May be Liable for Misleading Consumers if They Label Foods Containing Synthetic Citric and...

On September 30, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed in part a district court decision granting summary judgment to Dole Packaged Foods, LLC (“Dole”), finding that a reasonable fact finder could conclude that Dole’s...more

I May Not Be Able To Pronounce Acai But I Know It Doesn’t Burn Fat Cells: 5 Recent Over-the-Top Weight Loss Advertising Claims And...

Some say “ah-sigh;” I say “ah-kai;” but apparently the proper pronunciation of “acai” — the so-called super berry — is actually “ah-sigh-ee.” Who knew? Acai berries are native to the Amazon rainforest and have been hailed...more

Empty spaces causing big problems: the rise of slack-fill litigation

Last month, a district court judge in California dismissed a highly publicized lawsuit in which the plaintiff claimed that Starbucks’ iced beverages contained too much ice and not enough coffee. The suit was the subject of...more

POM Wonderful Returns – Lanham Act False Advertising Claim Against Home Pregnancy Tests Not Precluded by FDCA

On September 9, 2016, the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit issued an interesting decision in a false advertising case involving a dispute between competitors in the home pregnancy testing market. Church & Dwight Co. v....more

Not So Sweet: The Debate Over Evaporated Cane Juice

FDA’s final guidance expresses its view that the phrase “evaporated cane juice” is false and misleading. “Evaporated cane juice” has become a popular ingredient in everything from yogurt to cookies, attracting consumers...more

$70 million assessed against J&J for boy who grew breasts from Risperdal

A Tennessee teen-ager suffered such emotional distress after growing enlarged breasts as an undisclosed side-effect of an anti-psychotic medication that the drug’s maker should pay him $70 million in damages, a Philadelphia...more

Second Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Sham Citizen Petition Claim, Summary Judgment on False Advertising Claims **WEB ONLY**

Addressing Sherman Act and Lanham Act claims arising out of an Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA), the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit upheld the district court’s dismissal of the plaintiffs’ Sherman Act claim...more

State Safe Harbor Doctrines: A Life Preserver from False Advertising Claims Facing Alcohol Manufacturers?

Food and beverage companies, beset by lawsuits about their product labels, struggle to find consistent application of consumer protection laws across the country. The experience of one distiller and its use of one word on its...more

FDA Revisits Nutty Definition of “Healthy” Food

On May 10, the Food and Drug Administration announced it will be reevaluating how it defines “healthy” food. The move constitutes a reversal of an FDA warning letter issued in March 2015 to Kind, LLC, accusing the snack bar...more

FTC Targets “All Natural” and “100% Natural” Claims on Personal Care Products

As we have previously reported, FDA is currently seeking public comments on the use of the term “natural” on food labeling. The announcement came as a surprise since FDA had previously declined requests from consumers, the...more

Center for Veterinary Medicine Releases New Guidance

The center makes no bones about dog and cat food health claims. If you have been down a pet food aisle recently, you may have noticed dog and cat foods that claim to treat various conditions, such as claims to treat...more

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