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Flashback: FTC judge vindicates POM Wonderful's right to inform consumers about health benefits of pomegranates


(NaturalNews) A U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Administrative Law Judge has officially affirmed the right of POM Wonderful, a popular purveyor of pomegranate juice products, to continue making scientifically-backed health claims about its pomegranate products. Rejecting efforts by the FTC to restrict POM's ability to make truthful health claims, Judge Michael Chappell declared that POM's full disclosure of the health benefits of pomegranates in its advertising and product labeling is perfectly "appropriate."

As we first reported back in 2010, the FTC decided to launch a regulatory crusade against POM for making truthful, scientifically-backed claims about the health benefits of consuming pomegranates. Though each claim is backed by extensive research, including at least 70 peer-reviewed studies that have been published in reputable scientific journals, the FTC alleged such claims were false and misleading (http://www.pomwonderful.com).

Making any sort of health claims about food, in the opinion of the FTC, constitutes criminal activity unless the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officially decides that such claims are permissible. It does not matter, in other words, how many studies there are that back up a health claim -- if the federal government, in all of its endless wisdom, does not declare a health claim to be valid, then it is not valid (https://www.naturalnews.com/029901_pomegranate_juice_health_claims.html).

So for the past several years, POM has been embroiled in an extensive legal tangle with the FTC over the issue. And the mainstream media has eaten the whole thing up, sometimes making wild claims about how the POM case illustrates the need for more regulatory crackdown on the dietary supplement industry, which appears to have been the motive all along.

"Through its lawsuit against POM, the FTC tried to create a new, stricter industry standard, similar to that required for pharmaceuticals, for marketing the health benefits inherent in safe food and natural food-based products. They failed," said Craig Cooper, Chief Legal Officer for POM.

"While we are still analyzing the ruling, it is clear that we will be able to continue to promote the health benefits of our safe food products without having our advertisements, marketing or public relations efforts pre-approved by the FDA and without having to rely on double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled studies, the standard required for pharmaceuticals. We consider this not only to be a huge win for us, but for the natural food products industry."

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