Product Labels: Be Wary Of Making Claims

These days, it’s tempting to dress up your copy by using trendy terms, such as healthy, organic, GMO-free, etc, but be wary of making claims you haven’t done due diligence to back up.

Consumers are growing more and more wary of marketing claims and doing their homework to make sure they’re feeding their families is what companies are proclaiming, and if they’re not, they’re airing their grievances on social media and sometimes worse.

What’s worse, if consumers don’t investigate your claims, the FDA might.

In the last couple of weeks, Coca-Cola, the makers of Vitaminwater, has agreed to remove health benefit claims and add the words “with sweeteners” in two places on its label in order to settle a class action suit filed against parent Coca-Cola in 2009 by the Center for Science in the Public interest (CSPI).

Recently, two parents sued Welch’s Food, Inc., the makers of Welch’s Fruit Snacks, for claiming their snacks contain real fruit.

“The two women leading the legal dispute say pictures of fresh fruit and catch phrases on the packaging deceived health-conscious parents who purchased the fruit snacks,” Think Progress reports.

The women sued Welch’s, claiming the packaging is deceiving.

“Welch Foods has deceived shoppers by engaging in a deceptive marketing campaign to convince consumers that Welch’s Fruit Snacks contained significant amounts of the actual fruits shown in the marketing and on the labeling of the products, were nutritious and healthful to consume, and were more healthful than similar product,” the lawsuit claims.

Either this month, Kashi paid $3.9 million to settle a lawsuit that claimed Kashi’s labeling was misleading when it claimed its products were “all natural” when, in fact, the product contained “bio-engineered, artificial and synthetic” ingredients.

When labeling your product, resist temptation and be as honest as possible. Don’t make claims you can’t support. Consumers appreciate honest companies.

Be wary, your claims could come back to haunt you.