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FTC Upholds Administrative Judge’s POM Wonderful Decision

The Federal Trade Commission has upheld an Administrative Law Judge’s May 2012 decision that the marketers of POM Wonderful Pomegranate Juice and POMx supplements deceptively advertised their products as being able to would treat, prevent, or reduce the risk of heart disease, prostate cancer and other conditions.

The FTC issued a final order barring the marketers from making any claim that a food, drug or dietary supplement is “effective in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment or prevention of any disease” without having supporting results from two randomized human clinical trials. In addition, the final order requires competent and reliable scientific evidence to support claims about the “health benefits, performance or efficacy” of any food, drug or dietary supplement. 

In addition, the FTC rejected POM’s argument that the FTC action would violate POM’s First Amendment free speech rights and Fifth Amendment due process right, an issue POM attempted to have decided in Federal district court. That suit was dismissed by the judge.

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