POM Gets Spanked by the FTC
POM Wonderful, the over-advertised pomegranate juice in unnecessarily cute bottles, has been called out by the Federal Trade Commission to stop claiming that pomegranate products can cure, prevent or treat any disease until approved by the FDA.
They make claims such as:
“SUPER HEALTH POWERS! … 100% PURE POMEGRANATE JUICE. … Backed by $25 million in medical research. Proven to fight for cardiovascular, prostate and erectile health.”
The problem with making such claims is that only FDA-approved drugs can claim to cure, prevent or treat any disease.
POM is understandably upset. To date, POM has spent $34 million on researching pomegranates. That’s a lot of money on one fruit. If the judge decides that POM is making false claims, they will no longer be able to use these statements on their packaging. This is probably why they spent the money in the first place – so that they could use these claims for advertising.
POM should have hired me. I could have saved them millions of dollars and a bunch of negative publicity with this advertising campaign:
“All fruits and vegetables are good for you – backed by thousands of years of evolution. Pomegranate juice comes from fruit and is yummy, so drink some.”
Pomegranates are good for you. Pomegranate juice tastes good.
Do you need to drink overpriced juice to reap pomegranates’ health benefits? No. Are whole pomegranates better for you than juice? Yes, but those seeds are annoying. Could POM Wonderful have the health benefits it claims because of antioxidants? Yes, but so do other fruits and vegetables.
Eating a variety of fruits and vegetables keeps you healthy – not eating just one in particular, no matter how good the research says it is for you.