A couple of articles about lawsuits about VitaminWater caught my eye, recently. Though these two articles are somewhat the same, I thought I’d highlight both of them:
The crux of the case seems to be the name of VitaminWater and how it is misleading to consumers. The argument is that the consumers could easily believe it is water and vitamins, where in truth fructose and sucrose play significant roles in the product (and contributes significant calories). The judge’s recent statement about VitaminWater was:
“By including the suggestion that the product will ‘keep you healthy’ or ‘help bring about a healthy state of physical and mental being’ alongside such statements, the quoted language implies that the nutrient content of vitaminwater may help consumers maintain healthy dietary practices. I conclude, therefore, in light of the language and context in which they are used, that the statements on the ‘defense’ and ‘B- Relaxed’ labels constitute implied nutrient content claims which use the word ‘healthy.’ Such claims are in violation of violation of FDA regulations because . . . vitaminwater achieves its nutritional content solely through fortification that violates FDA policy.”
Now, before we get carried away, this isn’t a definitive ruling against Coca-Cola… it looks like it just means that Coke didn’t win a dismissal of the case. However, what caught my eye here is the last statement:
Such [healthy] claims are in violation of violation of FDA regulations because . . . vitaminwater achieves its nutritional content solely through fortification that violates FDA policy.
The above is something that is commonly known as the Jelly Bean Rule defined by the FDA on May 19, 1994. The idea behind it is that one can not claim jelly beans are healthy just because they are low in fat, sodium, and cholesterol. According to Wikipedia, the Jelly Bean Rule specifically states, “It says foods low in fat, cholesterol, and sodium cannot claim to be ‘healthy’ unless they contain at least 10 percent of: vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, protein, fiber, or iron. The FDA also made a policy that companies could not fortify foods with the sole intent of making that claim.”
MonaVie has been claiming for sometime that their juice is healthy. It would appear that they can do that since a serving of MonaVie has 25% of the RDA of vitamin C. However, I believe that vitamin C to be fortified (I don’t believe it is natural for an ounce of juice to have 25% of the RDA of vitamin C). If that vitamin C is fortified, then MonaVie seems to have been running afoul of the FDA’s jelly bean rule for years.
Of course that all changes with MonaVie Essential… a new generation of fortified juices. Oh wait, it doesn’t change because MonaVie has once again fortified the product. This time they are fortifying even more with vitamins A and E, B6 and B12, and fiber.
If people are this upset over the misleading name of VitaminWater, I can’t imagine what they’ll say about the illegal health claims that MonaVie has been making for years.
Originally posted 2010-07-25 22:23:32. Republished by Blog Post PromoterThe above article is intended to be accurate at the time of its original posting. MonaVie may change its pricing, product, or other policies at any time without notice.
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