Kellogg Company misleads consumers

miniwheats1Recently, Kellogg Company was handed a wrist-slap by the FTC for misleading consumers during a national campaign to promote its Frosted Mini-Wheats cereal.

According to the FTC, “Kellogg claimed […] that a breakfast of Frosted Mini-Wheats cereal is clinically shown to improve children’s attentiveness by nearly 20 percent. The complaint alleges that, in fact, according to the clinical study referred to in Kellogg’s advertising, only about half the children who ate Frosted Mini-Wheats for breakfast showed any improvement in attentiveness, and only about one in nine improved by 20 percent or more.”

As far as I can tell, Kellogg is not going to be fined. Instead, they are being asked follow the rules. According to the FTC:

“The proposed settlement would bar Kellogg from making comparable claims about Frosted Mini-Wheats unless the claims are true and not misleading. It requires that claims about the benefits to cognitive health, process, or function provided by Frosted Mini-Wheats or any morning food or snack food be substantiated and true. The settlement would prohibit Kellogg from misrepresenting the results of tests, studies, or research regarding any morning or snack food product.”

I think that a national brand like Kellogg should be fined because they should have known better. Instead it sounds as if the FTC is just going to give them a warning. This is a great learning opportunity to remind all brands that their advertisements need to be factual and not misleading.

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