Warning letters, Part 2: Facebook and beyond
Two warning letters from the FDA should serve as a reminder to supplement makers that the agency is scrutinizing their activities on Facebook and Twitter just as carefully as it is looking at their corporate websites.
In a warning letter to AMARC Enterprises, the FDA said a testamonial posted by a consumer on its Facebook page claiming that its PolyMVA dietary supplement “enabled me to keep cancer at bay without the use of chemo and radiation” - was ‘liked’ by the company.
As the posting amounted to an unauthorised drug-claim and AMARC had effectively 'endorsed' it by 'liking' it on its Facebook page, the FDA included this as one of several examples of the company promoting PolyMVA “for conditions that cause the product to be a drug” rather than a dietary supplement.
In a second warning letter sent to M.D.R. Fitness Corp (which you can read here), the FDA noted that typing diseases such as ‘cancer’ or ‘diabetes’ into the search box on its website brought up product lists of dietary supplements.
Because those products are as a result 'associated' with cancer and diabetes in consumers' minds, M.D.R. is "implying that its products are intended for use in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment or prevention of such diseases," argued the FDA.
To read our full coverage of these letters, please click here.