Of course during this season of the common cold, you’ve already heard all about those Airborne Effervescent Health Formula (also known as a “dietary supplement“) tablets. To say the least, San Franciscans are divided on the efficacy of this product.
But check out today’s tidings:
“Attorney General Brown Joins Agreement Forcing Airborne to Stop Marketing its Products as a Cure for the Common Cold.”
Snap! But of course, all your school teacher friends won’t care. They’ll go, “Well, I don’t know about that, but it works for me.” Fair enough, but it certainly seems like the Airborne folks feel that they might have gone too far with their claims.
This guy never gets sick. He’s Unbreakable:
via “Thomas Hawk’s” Photostream
The full skivvy:
SACRAMENTO – California Attorney General Edmund G. Brown Jr. today joined with 32 other state attorneys general in announcing a landmark $7 million settlement with Airborne, Inc. that forces the company to stop advertisements that “dramatically misrepresented” its dietary supplements as cold remedies.
“Airborne dramatically misrepresented its products as cold remedies without any scientific evidence to back up its claims,” Attorney General Brown said. “Under this agreement, the company will stop advertisements that suggest that its products are a cure for the common cold.”
Airborne began selling its products as a cold remedy on the Internet around July 2000 and on television in 2004. In its advertisements, Airborne featured people suffering from cold and flu symptoms and made unsupported statements suggesting its products were a cure for the common cold. This included:
• “Airborne Cold Remedy”
• “A Miracle Cold Buster!”
• “Sick of Catching Colds?”
• “Take at the first sign of a cold symptom.”
The company also requested that retailers sell Airborne products in the cold/cough aisle.
To substantiate their claims, Airborne relied upon studies that claimed the major ingredients in their products — Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Selenium, and Zinc — prevent colds. However, subsequent definitive studies found that these ingredients do not have any discernable effect to prevent colds. Despite the information, Airborne continued to market its products as cold remedies.
Investigators also raised concerns about the levels of Vitamin A in Airborne products. In older formulations, Airborne contained 5,000 International Units of Vitamin A. If the product was taken as instructed, consumers would ingest up to 15,000 International Units of Vitamin A daily.
This amount of Vitamin A poses potential health risks to vulnerable populations, including children and pregnant women. During the negotiation process, Airborne reformulated its product to contain only 2,000 International Units of Vitamin A.
More after the jump.