Competition Bureau resolves concerns in misleading weight loss claims case

GATINEAUQC, April 27, 2022 /CNW/ – A Competition Bureau investigation has found that NuvoCare Health Sciences Inc. and its founder, Ryan Foley, have made marketing claims that give the false or misleading impression that their products have been proven to cause weight loss. The Bureau found that their assertions were not supported by adequate and proper testing.

The Bureau resolved its concerns through a consent agreement with NuvoCare and Ryan Foleythat will prevent them from making false, misleading, or unsubstantiated marketing claims to consumers about the products they market for weight loss.

As part of this settlement, NuvoCare and Ryan Foley agreed to:

  • Pay $100,000 total penalties
  • change or remove all weight loss claims about their products
  • establish and maintain a corporate compliance program to promote compliance with the law and prevent deceptive marketing issues in the future

NuvoCare claims have promoted WeightOFF Max!, Forskolin+ and Forskolin Nx, among other products, and have been made on labels and packaging, web platforms, social media, magazines, emails and during of exhibitions.

NuvoCare products are authorized by Health Canada to make certain claims, but not to make weight loss claims.

The settlement registered with the Competition Tribunal has the force of an order and will be enforceable for a period of 10 years.

Estimate

“All sellers and distributors of natural health products Canada should review their advertising and ensure that any weight loss claims are not false, misleading or unsubstantiated. The Competition Bureau will not hesitate to crack down on companies that lure consumers with false or exaggerated claims about the properties of their health products. »

– Matthew Boswell
Commissioner of Competition

Fast facts

  • The Competition Bureau may take action to address any false, misleading or unsubstantiated health claim if the general impression it creates goes beyond what Health Canada has specifically approved.
  • the competition law prohibits businesses and individuals from making false or misleading statements to promote a product, service, or business interest, including statements in electronic messages. In addition, claims regarding a product’s performance or efficacy must be based on adequate and appropriate testingwhich must be performed before claims are made.
  • In February 2019the The Competition Bureau has issued a warning appealing to all sellers and distributors of natural health products Canada to review their advertising and ensure that weight loss claims are not false, misleading or unsubstantiated.
  • In May 2020the Bureau and NuvoCare have entered into an agreement temporary consent agreement which prohibited the company from making certain weight loss-related claims while the Bureau completed its investigation.
  • In January 2022the Federal Court of Canada issued a order requiring NuvoCare to produce records and information relevant to the Bureau’s investigation.
  • The Bureau strongly encourages anyone who suspects that a company or individual is making misleading marketing claims to report it using our online complaint form.

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The Competition Bureau is an independent law enforcement agency that protects and promotes competition for the benefit of Canadian consumers and businesses. Competition drives lower prices and innovation while fueling economic growth.

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