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“Natural” Splenda?

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

FTC should launch a formal investigation into McNeil Nutritionals' advertising that "creates the perception that Splenda is a natural product," the Sugar Association states in a Nov. 2 letter to the commission. Ads for McNeil's artificial sweetener, made from sucralose, are "literally false" because they bear the tagline "made from sugar so it tastes like sugar," the trade association asserts. The promotions are "designed to lull consumers into a belief that Splenda is safe and natural when consumers could likely be concerned for their safety if they knew that the sweetening agent in Splenda contains chlorine," the group adds. The New Zealand Advertising Standards Complaint Board and the Australian Advertising Claims Board have already found ads for the product are "false and misleading," the association states, maintaining FTC should "take measures to...end this advertising." Equal and Nutrasweet marketer Merisant filed a lawsuit against McNeil for the same "false and misleading" ad claim in 2005 (1"The Tan Sheet" Feb. 7, 2005, In Brief). In March, the Sugar Association petitioned FDA to establish "specific rules and regulations" governing the definition of "natural" in claims made on foods and beverages (2"The Tan Sheet" March 6, 2006, In Brief)...

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