National Advertising Review Board Recommends that Perrigo Discontinue “#1 Brand of Flossers” Claims for its Plackers Brand Dental Floss Products
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New York, NY – January 12, 2022 – A panel of the National Advertising Review Board (NARB), the appellate advertising law body of BBB National Programs, has recommended that Perrigo Company, PLC discontinue the claim that its oral care business’ Plackers floss product is the “#1 Brand of Flossers.”
The advertising at issue had been challenged by the Procter & Gamble Company (P&G) before the National Advertising Division (NAD) as part of NAD’s Fast Track SWIFT expedited challenge process, designed for single-issue advertising cases. Following NAD’s decision (Case No. 7065), Perrigo appealed NAD’s recommendations.
The NARB panel agreed with the position of NAD and the challenger that #1 claims are not supported without acceptable evidence that the category for which the claim is being made is recognized as a consumer-relevant category.
The panel concluded that the advertiser failed to provide sufficient evidence that the specific type of “flossers” at issue here (a piece of plastic ending in a two-pronged fork with a small piece of floss strung between the tines of the fork) is a category sufficiently separate and distinct from other oral care products that serve the same purpose (to remove plaque and clean between teeth) to be recognized by consumers as a separate category.
Although the panel recognized that this appears to be an expanding and developing area and there may come a time when a party may be able to show that a particular type of “flossers” is a separate and distinct category of oral care products from the perspective of the consumer, it found that such a conclusion was not warranted now on the record before it.
Therefore, the panel recommended that Perrigo discontinue the claim that its Plackers floss product is the “#1 Brand of Flossers.”
Perrigo stated that it “will comply with the NARB’s decision,” although noted that it is “extremely disappointed in the decision,” because it believes that “NARB failed to address any of the substantial, uncontroverted evidence Perrigo presented showing the consistent use of the flosser category by retailers and manufacturers, including P&G itself.
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