The cycle of deceptive marketing

Nestle's Boost Kid Essential Nutritionally Complete Drink with Immunity Protection with Patented Probiotic Straw, in Chocolate (Natural and Artificial Flavor)

Marketing a nutritional kid's drink

1) A nutritional drink is introduced.
From Popsop, the Brand Magazine Online, January 2009:
Nestle HealthCare Nutrition has launched a nutrition drink in the US, targeted at children in the country.

The Nestle unit today announced the release of Boost Kid Essentials Nutritionally Complete Drink. The beverage is designed to fortify a child’s diet with 25 vitamins and minerals, seven grams of protein, antioxidants and 244 calories, the division said.
“We are offering parents, for the first time, one complete drink for children that helps supports a healthy immune system and fills in the nutritional gaps they may be worried about,” says Barbara McCartney, vice president of retail marketing at Nestle HealthCare Nutrition.

“The patented straw, which contains probiotics, is a kid-friendly way parents can bolster their children’s natural defences and help support their healthy growth and development.”
Source: Popsop, the Brand Magazine Online>>
2) Social media promotes the drink.
From a personal blog called Three Different Directions, January 2009:
"What do you do when you know your child is not getting his or her full nutritional requirements? You could struggle with them to get them to eat more vegetables, fruits, protein, whatever it is that they are lacking, or you could present them with a delicious, nutritious drink that provides them with 25 essential vitamins and minerals, seven grams of muscle-building protein and key antioxidants.

That's right BOOST Kid Essentials Drink provides all that, and it tastes great too! Available in Chocolate, Strawberry and Vanilla flavors, you will have no problems getting your child to drink this...."
Source: a personal blog called Three Different Directions>>
3) The FDA questions the marketing.
From the Food and Drug Administration, December, 2009:
"This is to advise you that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reviewed your websites...

Your BOOST Kid Essentials Nutritionally Complete Drink (Vanilla, Chocolate, and Strawberry flavors) is promoted on your websites as a "medical food," and the labeling claims on your websites represent the product as a medical food for the medical condition of "failure to thrive" and also for "pre/post surgery, injury or trauma, chronic illnesses." As discussed further below, this product is misbranded...

No established distinctive nutritional requirement exists for the conditions for which your product is promoted as a medical food."
 Source: The Food and Drug Administration>>
4) Company is told to stop making deceptive claims.
From The New York Times, July, 2010:
"According to a recent Nestlé ad campaign aimed at parents, a drink called Boost Kid Essentials was so good for children that it could keep them from getting colds and missing school.

But on Wednesday, the Federal Trade Commission said the ads were deceptive and announced that Nestlé had agreed to stop making the claims.

“Food companies are marketing more of what they call functional foods,” said Karen Mandel, a staff lawyer for the trade commission. The term refers to foods with added nutrients that companies claim can bring health benefits to people who eat or drink them."
The trade commission’s action came about six weeks after it announced that Kellogg had agreed to stop making a claim that nutrients added to its Rice Krispies cereal helped bolster children’s immunity to illnesses.
Source: Nestlé Will Drop Claims of Health Benefit in Drink, The New York Times>>
 5) Attorneys investigate.
"The law firm Statman, Harris & Eyrich, LLC is investigating a possible class action against Nestle HealthCare Nutrition, Inc., a division of Nestle S.A., regarding alleged false and deceptive advertising claims related to the supposed health benefits of BOOST Kid Essentials, a children's nutrition drink."
 Source: MarketWatch press release>>

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