BBB National Programs Archive
Bio-K+ International Participates In ERSP Forum
New York,NY– June 29, 2007 – The Electronic Retailing Self-Regulation Program (ERSP) has determined that Bio-K+ International (Bio-K+), has provided a reasonable basis for certain claims for the Bio-K+ CL1285 probiotics, but recommended modification of others. The marketer’s advertising was brought to the attention of ERSP by an anonymous competitor.
ERSP, the electronic direct-response industry’s self-regulatory forum, is administered by the Council of Better Business Bureaus (CBBB) with policy oversight by the National Advertising Review Council (NARC).
Claims at issue in the ERSP inquiry included:
- “Clinically proven to prevent antibiotic-associated diarrhea (AAD); C
- difficile-associated diarrhea (CDAD).”
- “The highest concentration of fresh, live bacteria with a minimum of 50 billion at consumption.”
- “A probiotic whose efficacy is medically proven.”
- “As a nutritionist and researcher, I have not seen any probiotic perform as well as Bio-K+. For consistent results, I recommend Bio-K+…because it works!”
ERSP determined that the marketer’s randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled study provided a reasonable basis for its claim that the product has been clinically tested for the prevention of AAD. However, ERSP noted, it is inaccurate to state the product is “clinically proven to prevent CDAD.”
ERSP recommended that the marketer clearly make a distinction in its advertising to clarify that only the original, 50 billion strain Bio -K+ CL1285 is the product that has been clinically proven to prevent AAD and not the other product variations in the line.
ERSP determined that the marketer provided a reasonable basis for claims of general product performance that were communicated in the advertising and found that the the marketer’s expert endorsements were appropriately communicated.
ERSP recommended the marketer include a clear and conspicuous disclosure on the consumer testimonial page to alert consumers that the testimonials are based on individual experience and that individual results may vary.
The company, in its marketer statement, said “Bio-K+ International has a long standing tradition of communicating balanced, accurate and scientifically validated information to consumers. While we feel vindicated by the above review of our advertising by the (ERSP), the report makes recommendations that we support and have every intention of implementing.”