BBB National Programs Archive
NAD Recommends DKB Household USA Discontinue Advertising Claims made for Salad Spinner After Challenge by OXO International
New York, NY – May 30, 2018 – The National Advertising Division has recommended DKB Household USA Corp., discontinue the advertising claims for the company’s Zyliss SwiftDry Salad Spinner that were challenged by OXO International, Ltd., the maker of a competing product.
The claims at issue, which appeared in at a company website, on product packaging, in a trade demonstration video, in point-of-sale material, and on product pages for online retailers, included:
- “Removes 25% More Water* *Average test results versus leading competitors”
- “Unique AquaVent technology removes 25% more water”
- “The Zyliss SwiftDry Salad Spinner features an all new AquaVent basket technology, creating maximum airflow and surface area efficiency to remove up to 25% more water.”
- “AquaVent ridged basket removes 25% more water than other salad spinners.”
- “Uses a patented AquaVent drying system to remove 25% more water than conventional spinners.”
- “AquaVent technology removes up to 25% more water from leafy greens, fresh herbs and more.”
NAD has routinely recognized the strong impact that quantified performance claims have on consumers and it is well-established that quantified performance claims should closely reflect the test results upon which they are based, NAD noted in its decision.
The advertiser in this case submitted a third-party test to show that its SwiftDry salad spinner does remove 25 percent more water than competing salad spinners. NAD was, however, concerned by three key aspects of this testing and ultimately found that the challenged claims were unsupported.
As NAD noted in its decision, the testing was conducted on simulated salad leaves – cloth or sponges – not on produce.
The advertiser argued that it used simulated leaves because actual produce would have disintegrated during testing, undermining the test’s reliability, but did not explain why it could not run repeated tests on equal weights of a representative produce or produce blend.
NAD has consistently held that the most reliable measure of a product’s performance is demonstrated by tests designed to test the product in the same manner the product is directed to be used by consumers and rejected tests that are not conducted on the actual material to be used with the advertised product.
NAD has previously held that advertisers should possess testing that yields statistically significant results. In this case, NAD noted, because of a small sample size here and wide variation in test results, it is unlikely that the testing demonstrates a 25 percent difference in water extraction to a statistically significant degree.
Finally, the advertiser only tested its product in relation to those offered by OXO and a second competitor. To support a broad superiority claim, an advertiser must test a variety of competing products that comprise all or a substantial portion of competitive products the market and here, NAD noted in its decision, there was no evidence in the record that the OXO and Chef’n products comprise all or a substantial portion of competitive products.
NAD recommended that the advertiser discontinue the challenged claims.
DKB Household USA Corp., said in its advertiser’s statement that it “will comply with NAD’s recommendation that it discontinue the challenged claims” and “appreciates the thoughtful analysis performed by NAD, even though DKB disagrees with the conclusions of the analysis.”
“DKB believes its advertising claims were substantiated by the testing, which was conducted in accordance with a sound scientific basis,” the company said.
DKB believes its advertising claims were substantiated by the testing, which was conducted in accordance with a sound scientific basis.
Note: A recommendation by NAD to modify or discontinue a claim is not a finding of wrongdoing and an advertiser’s voluntary discontinuance or modification of claims should not be construed as an admission of impropriety. It is the policy of NAD not to endorse any company, product, or service. Decisions finding that advertising claims have been substantiated should not be construed as endorsements.