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General

Misleading Claims: Chiropractors’ Association of Australia (National) – Simply Flower Power (1)

Date: 28/10/11
Code: 2011-09-011
Product: Simply Flower Power (1)
Complainant: Requested anonymity
Respondent: Chiropractors’ Association of Australia (National)
Finding: Justified
Sections Found Justified: Code sections 4(1)(b), 4(2)(a), 4(2)(c)
Sections Found Not Justified: Code section 4(2)(b)
Action: Withdraw advertisement; withdraw representations

CAA - Simply Flower Power

Findings of the Panel

14. The Panel noted the argument presented by the advertiser that the words used in the advertisement were “mere puffery”. The Panel found this argument to be quite extraordinary, particularly when made by an organisation representing healthcare professionals. The advertiser appeared to be stating that the words “natural pain relief cream that really works” had been adopted by them to promote the product, even though the advertiser was in no way prepared to argue that the words were truthful or accurate, and indeed argued that the words were not to be taken seriously at all and were “simply general marketing language”.

15. Contrary to the argument of the advertiser, the Panel was satisfied that the words “natural pain relief cream that really works” are clearly a representation that the advertised product is effective in relieving pain. No reasonable consumer reading the words could be expected to interpret them as “mere puffery” or as having any meaning other than their plain, obvious, and explicit meaning. The Panel did not accept the argument that such clear and plain words were “mere puffery” and that “no consumer would be swayed” by them, and was concerned at the unwillingness of the Chiropractors’ Association of Australia to acknowledge responsibility for the material they had published.

17. In the absence of any evidence from the advertiser, the Panel was satisfied that the representations that the advertised product is a “pain relief cream” and that it “really works” or is effective for pain relief had not been verified, were not correct and balanced, were likely to arouse unwarranted expectations, were misleading, and abused the trust and exploited the lack of knowledge of consumers.

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About Bayani

Bayani is an advocate of rational thought and free-thinking; he dislikes ignorance and apathy, encourages others to thoroughly investigate the extraordinary claims they encounter, and to question underlying assumptions about their beliefs.

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