Thanks for the BOOST, Nestle.
The Federal Trade Commission has reached a proposed settlement with a subsidiary of Nestle over BOOST, its childrens' nutritional drink. The FTC said that Nestle advertised that Boost Kid Essentials drink helps prevent upper respiratory tract infections in children, protects against colds and flu by boosting the immune system, reduced school sick days and sped up recovery from injuries.
The drink comes with a straw that is loaded with probiotics which are live bacteria found naturally in many foods. Probiotics are often touted as aiding digestion and fighting harmful bacteria although the science is inconclusive at best.
The FTC said that Nestle will drop claims about the health benefits of Boost Kid Essentials as well as no longer claiming that it reduces sick days or has other such benefits unless they are verified by clinical studies.
"Nestle's claims that its probiotic product would prevent kids from getting sick or missing school just didn't stand up to scrutiny," David Vladeck, director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection, said.
In a rare step, under the proposed settlement Nestle must now seek FDA approval before making any claims that its products have positive health benefits, improve performance, or other wise relating to the efficacy of any probiotic and nutrition drinks that it sells unless the claims are verified by scientific evidence.
The proposed settlement is subject to public comment for 30 days, through August 16, 2010, after which the FTC will decide whether to make it final. To file a public comment, please click on the following hyperlink: https://ftcpublic.commentworks.com/nestle.