NAD Recommends Goli Nutrition Modify Energy Production Claims for Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies, and Discontinue Skin Health Claims
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New York, NY – March 17, 2021 – The National Advertising Division (NAD) of BBB National Programs recommended that Goli Nutrition Inc. modify its Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) Gummies “Vitamin B12 to help support energy production” claim to make it clear that Goli is referring to cellular energy and to avoid conveying the impression that consumers taking its ACV Gummies will feel a noticeable increase in energy or become more energetic. NAD also recommended that Goli discontinue the following skin health claims:
- “Folic acid supports skin health”
- “B9 supports healthy skin”
- “Folic acid for healthy skin”
These claims were challenged by Pharmavite LLC, a competing manufacturer of Nature Made brand dietary supplements, along with a multitude of claims on the advertiser’s website, social media, and in videos promoting the various health benefits of its ACV gummies, including weight loss, appetite control, heart health, increased energy, improved skin health, healthy digestion, improved immune function, reduced bloating, reduced cravings, reduced indigestion, and detoxification. Some of these claims are tied to apple cider vinegar or specific ingredients, but most are attributed to the entire product.
Apple cider vinegar is a liquid made by fermenting apples and, while unfiltered and unpasteurized, contains sediment that settles at the bottom of the bottle identified by Goli as “The Mother.” Goli’s ACV Gummies contain 500 mg of ACV (5% acetic acid), which Goli claims to be “the mother,” as well as 200 mcg DFE of vitamin B9 (120 mcg folic acid), 1.2 mcg of vitamin B12 and other ingredients.
During the proceeding, the advertiser agreed to permanently discontinue all claims at issue, except for those relating to heart health, energy, skin health, and immune function. These remaining claims were modified, after which the challenger only objected to the vitamin B12 claim and skin health claims referenced above. NAD did not review the discontinued or unchallenged modified claims on their merits.
NAD determined that at least one reasonable consumer takeaway from the claim “Vitamin B12 to help support energy production” is that taking vitamin B12 to “support energy production” will make consumers feel a noticeable increase in energy or more energetic. NAD reviewed the advertiser’s evidence and found it insufficient to support this message. Therefore, NAD recommended that the claim be modified to be clear that Goli is referring to cellular energy and to avoid conveying the impression that consumers taking Vitamin B12 will feel a noticeable increase in energy or become more energetic.
In support of its modified skin health claims, the advertiser relied on a National Institutes of Health Folate Fact Sheet, and two articles, neither of which addressed the benefit of folic acid supplementation on skin health. Based on this evidence, NAD determined that the advertiser had not substantiated its skin health claims and recommended that they be discontinued.
In its advertiser statement, Goli stated that it will comply with the NAD’s decision. Although the advertiser noted that it disagreed with NAD’s findings regarding the role of folic acid in skin health and the message conveyed by its B12 claim, the company stated that it “respects the self-regulatory process and appreciates the NAD’s careful attention to this matter.”
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About BBB National Programs: BBB National Programs is where businesses turn to enhance consumer trust and consumers are heard. The non-profit organization creates a fairer playing field for businesses and a better experience for consumers through the development and delivery of effective third-party accountability and dispute resolution programs. Embracing its role as an independent organization since the restructuring of the Council of Better Business Bureaus in June 2019, BBB National Programs today oversees more than a dozen leading national industry self-regulation programs, and continues to evolve its work and grow its impact by providing business guidance and fostering best practices in arenas such as advertising, child-directed marketing, and privacy. To learn more, visit bbbprograms.org.
About the National Advertising Division: The National Advertising Division (NAD) of BBB National Programs provides independent self-regulation and dispute resolution services, guiding the truthfulness of advertising across the U.S. NAD reviews national advertising in all media and its decisions set consistent standards for advertising truth and accuracy, delivering meaningful protection to consumers and leveling the playing field for business.
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