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Check Out Line: Watch those health claims, FDA tells green tea sellers


Check out federal regulator’s warning to green tea sellers.


The U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued warning letters to Dr Pepper Snapple Group and Unilever over their use of health claims to sell green tea products.

The agency, which regularly sends warning letters to companies that have violating manufacturing, marketing and testing requirements, took issue with Dr Pepper Snapple Group’s claim that its Canada Dry Green Tea Ginger Ale is “enhanced with 200 mg of antioxidants from green tea and Vitamin C”. FDA said the statement did not comply with rules governing nutrient content claims.

In its letter to Unilever, FDA said the company violated the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act with claims that consuming green tea, like its Lipton decaffeinated green tea, can help lower cholesterol.

“The therapeutic claims on your website establish that the product is a drug because it is intended for use in the cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease. Your Lipton Green Tea 100% Natural Naturally Decaffeinated product is not generally recognized as safe and effective for the above referenced uses and, therefore, the product is a ‘new drug’ … New drugs may not be legally marketed in the U.S. without prior approval from FDA,” the agency said.

Dr Pepper gets flat reception on Wall Street


doc.jpgDr Pepper Snapple Group debuted on the New York Stock Exchange Wednesday after being spun off from British candy and gum company Cadbury. 
The company is putting together a five-year plan to improve its business in Latin America, but its main focus will be on selling more drinks in the United States, Chief Executive Larry Young told Reuters.
Unfortunately, that might not be what Wall Street wants to hear.
Dr Pepper’s exposure to the sluggish U.S. soft drinks business could hurt growth.
 ”The firm has a mixed stable of brands, lacks the scale and product portfolio breadth enjoyed by larger rivals Coke and Pepsi, and relies almost exclusively on the mature and highly competitive U.S. market,” Morningstar analyst Mitchell Corwin said.
Still, Young says the company’s brands will take care of themselves.
“We have great brands, great people and are focused on delivering great results,” he said. “We’ll let the market take care of the price.”

(Reuters photo)