BBB National Programs Archive

NAD Recommends Genomma Modify Current Broadcast Ad for ‘Silka’ to Avoid Certain Comparisons to Other OTC Athlete’s Foot Products

New York, NY – May 12, 2016 – The National Advertising Division has recommended that Genomma Lab USA, Inc. maker of the athlete’s foot product Silka, modify current advertising claims to eliminate certain comparisons to competing over-the-counter products.

NAD is an investigative unit of the advertising industry’s system of self-regulation. It is administered by the Council of Better Business Bureaus.

Bayer Healthcare, LLC, challenged advertising claims made by Genomma in Spanish-language advertising, including:

  • “Silk is 400% faster than other products in alleviating the itching, burning, dryness, and calling of athlete’s foot between the toes.”
  • Silka is the fastest to cure athlete’s foot or treat athlete’s foot symptoms.
  • Consumers will have not itchiness or burning after seven days of using Silka.
  • Consumers will experience complete relief from athlete’s foot after only four days of using Silka
  • Consumers will be cured of the condition in less than four weeks. 

In response to NAD’s inquiry, the company said certain of the claims at issue had been permanently discontinued, but continued to air due to a miscommunication in its marketing department in Mexico City. Genomma said it has made changes to its internal process for approving and posting TV commercials for airing in the United States to prevent further broadcast of the discontinued claims.

In reliance on the advertiser’s representation that the challenged claims have been permanently discontinued, NAD did not review the claims on their merits.  NAD noted that the voluntarily discontinued claims will be treated, for compliance purposes, as though NAD recommended their discontinuance and the advertiser agreed to comply.

NAD did examine Genomma’s current advertising to determined whether any of the challenged claims were broadcast NAD concluded the current claim – “one week topical treatment” between the toes with Silka – combined with the visual images of the treated area healing by Day 7, was supported.

However, NAD recommended that the current commercial be modified to remove the language, “compared with other OTC products to treat athlete’s foot,” and avoid implying that Silka is faster than competing products.

Genomma, in its advertiser’s statement, said the company agreed to remove the language “compared with other OTC products to treat athlete’s foot” and comply with NAD’s recommendations in future advertising.

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.