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Thursday, May 17, 2012

ERSP Refers Advertising from Venus America to FTC for Review; Marketer Fails to Provide Sufficient Evidence for Claims

The Electronic Retailing Self-Regulation Program (ERSP) will refer direct-response advertising from Venus America Corp., maker of Venus Mother of Pearl Powder Cream, to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), following the marketer’s failure to provide sufficient evidence to support its performance claims.

ERSP is an investigative unit of the advertising industry’s system of self-regulation and is administered by the Council of Better Business Bureaus. The marketer’s advertising came to ERSP’s attention through an anonymous competitive complaint.

Claims at issue in the initial inquiry included:
  • Reducing blemishes, scars, wrinkles, stretch marks, acne, pimples, blackheads, crow’s feet, expression lines, irritation after shaving.”
  • The only one that has maintained itself within the market with results; tested and proven.”
  • A 100% natural formula with all the regenerative power of its principle ingredient – mother of pearl powder, extracted from the bottom of the sea and enriched with vitamins to make your skin look smoother, hydrated and healthy.”
  • Venus Mother of Pearl Powder Cream from Veracruz Mexico possesses an antimicrobial agent attacking and preventing the growth of bacteria on the skin. Being a natural product it causes no harmful side effects.”
  • “It reduces the wrinkles in very few weeks.”
Following the marketer’s failure to submit to ERSP any evidence that would demonstrate a reasonable basis for its claims, ERSP recommended that the marketer discontinue the claims at issue. ERSP then forwarded its recommendations to the advertiser and requested a Marketer’s Statement as to whether the company would agree to discontinue the claims.

The marketer did not respond to ERSP’s and after expiration of the five (5) day time period provided by the Electronic Retailing Self-Regulation Program Policy & Procedures, ERSP referred the matter to the FTC for further review.


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