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Fraud complaints about supplements spike

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Consumers filed more than three times as many fraud complaints with the Federal Trade Commission about dietary supplements and herbal remedies in 2009 than in 2008, the commission says. FTC received 3,060 complaints about supplements in 2009 compared to 943 in 2008, according to FTC's Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book released in February. Food and drug attorney Marc Ullman speculates that increase "has something to do with the constant harping about 'unregulated,' 'loosely-regulated,' 'under-regulated,' 'steroid-ridden'" supplements in the media (1"The Tan Sheet" Dec. 7, 2009). Ullman, with the New York firm Ullman, Shapiro & Ullman, adds FTC will continue to scrutinize heavily supplements and herbals going forward "as evidenced by the commission's recent warning letters to omega-3 marketers" (2"The Tan Sheet" Feb. 22, 2009). Fraud complaints about OTC and Rx drugs also jumped 87 percent to 1,396 in 2009 compared to the previous year, according to FTC

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