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POM Thumbs Nose at FTC, Celebrates Judge's Ruling

New ad campaign tests limits of agency: Washington Post
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 26, 2012 12:12 PM CDT
POM Thumbs Nose at FTC, Celebrates Judge's Ruling
POM Wonderful isn't shy about making health claims.   (PRNewsFoto/POM Wonderful)

(Newser) – A judge this week criticized juice maker POM for making deceptive claims about the health benefits of its pomegranate juice. But you wouldn't know it from POM's reaction: It took out full-page ads celebrating certain parts of the ruling, asserting that the judge agreed that POM products "provide significant health benefits." As the Washington Post sees it, the company "poked a big stick in the eye of the Federal Trade Commission" and is testing the limits of the FTC's power.

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“What’s going on with POM is wild,” says an advertising lawyer. Unlike other big advertisers that have gotten into fights with the FTC, POM is not quietly acquiescing. And it's making a "public spectacle" of the agency in the interim, writes Dina ElBoghdady. The company plans to appeal the decision that some of its ads were misleading, and the outcome could set a precedent in legal circles of exactly how far the FTC can go in requiring advertisers to back up their claims. (Read more POM Wonderful stories.)

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