Food science – Role in Advertising and the Marketplace Essay



Role in Advertising and the Marketplace:

The sleep MD advert:

The sleep MD advert which is intended to advertise a drug used to enhance sleep; the drug however gives information that it is not intended to cure any disease or disorder; we will analyze the advertisement according to the FTC laws of advertisement as follows:

Identifying express and implied claims:

The advert qualifies in this law in that it gives the expression through text that it is intended to enhance sleep, it also discloses information that the drug is not intended to cure any disease, however it does not disclose qualifying information as to how long the drug works. It only says sleep better and longer but does not say how long one intends to sleep.

Disclosure of qualifying information:

The advert in a way does not disclose qualifying information as to whether there are any side effects to the use of the drug, however it discloses that the drug is not addictive but does not give descriptions on the dosage to taken and the age bracket dosage.

Clear and prominent disclosure:

The product by name sleep MD does not give clear and prominent disclosure in that it does not give the outcomes of taking the drug in excess, example if one decides to sleep the whole week you could probably sleep longer by taking up twice or thrice the normal dose. Alternatively, if the product has any side effects for excessive use of the product

Substantiating claims:

This product in a way qualify in substantial claims in that it provides claims by several doctors who may have proven that the product is natural and good, however it claims that more than 200 million Americans do not get enough sleep and this may be a false claim, and that the customer cannot prove this claims. However, the consumers may not prove the claims that the supplement is not addictive. Therefore, the product does not qualify according to the substantiating claims of the FTC laws of advertising.

Use of testimonials and traditional use:

The advertisement does not use any traditional use or testimonials and therefore it is not against any FTC laws of supplement, it does not also claim that the supplement were previously or traditionally used to cure some illness and therefore according to this law the product qualifies in that it is not against this law.


The products label sleep MD is a registered trademark but its patent is pending, however the use the word, the label however may be misleading in that it uses the text sleep managing director where MD may mean managing director. This means that consumers may assume that the supplement is to manage ones sleep and therefore it is necessary to use. However, this may mislead those suffering from other illnesses such as stress and depression that may lead to sleeplessness. Therefore, the supplement may not manage the sleep of such consumers.


Sunny Health Case:

Explain the “purview” of FTC in terms of false advertising about supplements. What is their charge/duty and what types of powers do they have to carry out their obligation.

For the adverts on height max, it is evident that there is a clear indication of lack of clear and prominent disclosure. This is on the of the side effects of the product height max, its adverts in the internet and other forms of advertisement are not consistent. In the internet, they use other key words that are not viewed by users so that they redirect the user to their link.

They use the word scientifically proven to give an impression that is difficult for the customer to prove, still on the difficult of the consumer to prove is whether the minerals proven to be contained by the product such as vitamin a, vitamin d among others.

The product does not give clear and prominent information, on the use of the product, it claims that the use of the product twice a day then the full potential of the product achieved but it does not give the results if one uses the product four times a day. On clear and prominent claims the adverts do not give a clear indication of what would happen if a person whose age is below 12 years or above 25 years used the product, would one grow taller.

Therefore the FTC has the powers to charge the advertiser for giving deceptive and false claims about the product, which was advertised through the radio and internet by the domain and .

Read the Sunny Health News Release. Where does this fit into FTC power, e.g. what is this news release reporting in terms of FTC action?

According to the sunny news release it is evident that the so named chitosan fat blocker was a product that contained chitosan, which is a fiber, which is indigestible and indigestible and does not enter the blood stream, it simply goes through the intestinal tract without any absorption in the body. However studies showed that the chitosan only helps reduce the amount of fat absorbed in a diet consumed in a day. Therefore the FTC has the power to prosecute the advertiser for giving false information to consumers about the weight loss according to this advert, also the false information that the product contained other minerals that are essential to the body.

Read the Sunny Health Case file. This is long in pages, but double spaced, contains English and Spanish and Spanish translations, so it is really not that many pages of English and also contains many ad examples. What is the FTC complaint? (Page 3)

The Spanish and English translations do not contain the same message, the English 1 has is different form the Spanish one in that the Spanish advert contains a testimonial while the other does not contain the same. Therefore the FTC complaint is that the information given to consumers of the product is misleading and not consistent and therefore most probably false claims.

What is Height Max? What are claims made for this product? What are venues (ways) in which it was advertised? Make sure to give examples of various types—these would be the “exhibits” noted

Height max advertised in news papers the internet and on radio, it claimed that its product would help those aged between the age of 12 to 25 were to use the product, the product came in two bottles where one was to take twice a day and this would ensure a full potential of gain in height.

Starting on page 15, the FTC presents the “counts” against the company. What is the “charge” against the company in terms of Height Max advertising? Again, just concentrate on Height Max, not the Osteovite or the Liposan.

The counts of the height max product is that first it gives false information when it claims that the product helps gain height to persons aged 12 to 25 as compared to those who do not use the product, therefore those who do not use the product are less likely to gain weight as those who use the product. Increases the possibility of lean body and body mass and that a professional developed the product. And this led to a large amount of monetary loss to consumer who purchased the product to gain the said advantages according to information given by the advert.

What does FTC say that the courts can and should do?

The FTC says that the court should halt such activities and offer relief to those who have suffered because of such information.

Choose any one of the exhibits in the exhibit section….describe the ad or commercial and then use the FTC criteria that you used in question 1 above and apply these to that exhibit/ad. What do you conclude?

The radio commercial in Spanish uses testimonials that are false and therefore it would have been evident that the said claims were false.

Finally, it is clear that FTC cannot find and prosecute all questionable advertising of supplements. Write a short paragraph here telling FTC which types of supplements that you think are most likely to be subject to false advertising. Explain your reasoning and give your strategy for decreasing the number of false ads from this particular type of supplement. Make sure to use some data to backup your answer.

From my own point of view it is evident that most supplement adverts give false claims, however the best product to purchase as a result of advertisement are those that have already been checked by the food and drug administration. Therefore, all products should pass through the food and drug administration department, which is for monitoring the advertisements by these products.


Market Place


The background section of this article is longer than many (usually a paragraph or two). Explain the main issues that the authors brought up in the background that lead to their doing this study

The writers main issues that led to the study was that legal issues concerning supplements were not well defined despite the supplements being widely used and sold by pharmacies around the country, the study also reviews the attitude , knowledge and practices by pharmacies regarding dietary supplements.

How did they collect data? How did they include or exclude studies?

Data was collected form previous studies from the 2006 and 800 articles were selected where data on pharmaceutical products, herbs and therapy data was obtained, however because it excluded data written before the year 1990 because this data was too old to be used in the present policymaking and implementation.

The authors provide tables and discussion that cover pharmacists’ attitudes toward supplements, their knowledge and their professional practice with supplements. Summarize the data in each of these categories.

On attitude towards dietary supplements it was evident that the level of positive and negative attitude were equal and this can be explained by the fact that the pharmacist lacked enough knowledge and information regarding the supplements, and as a result of lack of information understanding this supplements was limited.

What did the authors conclude about each of these categories based on the data?

The author concludes that there is need to have extra training of pharmacist regarding dietary supplements, this would ensure that they would provide information to consumers regarding supplements.

Based on this reading, explain whether you think that pharmacists are good sources of information on dietary supplements (since they are usually present where they are sold. Give both the positives and negatives of a consumer using a pharmacist for advice. Think about this from the consumer’s perspective and the pharmacist’s perspective.

The best of information is the food and drug department, which should check all supplements in the market on components and their possibility to have provided the right information to consumers. Through proper information on the product pharmacist will be in a position to gain knowledge on the supplements, therefore proper regulations should be put in place to ensure the right information is passed on to consumers.

Question two

What background does this author provide? Based on his introduction, what do you think his perspective is? What does he say has contributed to “legitimization of unproven medications”?

According to the writer in 1994, the diet supplement act and the education act emerged and this ensured that producers of supplements gave the right information about products and that every supplement produced had to undergo a scientific test to prove its effectiveness and to ensure that they gave the right information to consumers.

According to this author, what is the dilemma of pharmacy education? Give examples/explain

The writer feels that there has been a struggle to educate people in universities about unproven medication and therapies and that the dilemma is that should the education include the use of such cures whose safety and efficiency is unknown.

Question three

According to this article, what are the top issues in dietary supplements? Summarize each in your own words.

According to the top issues in dietary supplements first is the high revenue on sales of dietary supplements, the revenue amounts to 60 billion pounds yearly, the first agenda is the research agenda, which refers to an increase in research on supplement, which companies borrow from each other.

The next agenda is the Chinas opportunity whereby raw material flow from china into the US, however there is a problem whereby a Chinese company has joined with an American company where the china company seems to be providing goods produced under unsanitary production.

The other issue is the change of the old dietary ingredients to new dietary ingredients and if this technology was to be adopted then a large amount of supplements will be sold illegally.

Contrast the message in this article with the message in the pharmacy ethics article. Then discuss the pros and cons of the relatively free marketplace for supplements that DSHEA allows in the US for supplements. Make sure that you take into account the US cultural values, like free enterprise and individual choice, as well as our supposedly scientific and evidence based medical system. Explain how these seem to “clash” over the supplements area and what might be a resolution to the “clash”.

FDA is working to develop workable safety definition of supplements, The Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition says that New Dietary Ingredients as defined by the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 are both a working safety definition and policy enforcement for supplements.

The new definition of chemical alteration is the key issue; any dietary supplement ingredient that has been altered as of 1994 is a New Dietary Ingredient subject to the safety submission obligations under the DSHEA act. If adopted as an enforcement policy then many of currently sold supplements would be illegal.


Case study and FTC laws on pharmaceutical supplements and the drug act (2007) retrieved on 29th June, available at