National Advertising Division Recommends That Cookware Company Changes Its “Never Sticks” Advertising
According to a report from PR Newswire, the National Advertising Division (NAD) of the Better Business Bureau (BBB) has completed its official inquiry into the home appliance company
‘SharkNinja’ and its ‘NeverStick’ cookware line. The NAD has determined that the brand name is permissible, but it recommends that SharkNinja change its branding. In this blog post, our Miami deceptive & unfair trade practices attorneys provide an overview of deceptive advertising and discuss the recommendations from the non profit organization.
NAD Findings: Not Misleading, but Exaggerated Claims
SharkNinja is a home appliance company with primary headquarters just outside of Boston, Massachusetts. The company owns and markets a line of cookware products called “NeverStick.” As the name suggests, a significant part of the market campaign focuses on the fact that the brand offers ‘non-stick’ cookware products. A line used in the company’s advertising describes “the NeverStick cookware that NEVER sticks, chips or flakes.”
Non-stick cookware products tend to degrade and lose their “non-stick” properties over time. The campaign launched by SharkNinja suggests that is not the case with their line of products. However, the National Advertising Division has found that the company does not have sufficient justification to support its message of superiority. As such, the NAD determined that the brand name “NeverStick” is appropriate, but recommends that other aspects of the advertising campaign should be changed.
The FDUTPA Protects Consumers Against False and Misleading Advertising
The Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (FDUTPA) is a commercial statute that protects consumers and businesses in Florida against deceptive and unfair practices, including false and misleading advertising. Indeed, false advertising is one of the primary abusive commercial practices that is forbidden by the FDUTPA. Businesses that knowingly make false and misleading claims to consumers—including in advertising—can be held liable for damages.
Notably, the FDUTPA standards are largely modelled on the guidance from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The FTC has developed a wide body of case law regarding false and deceptive advertising. As an overriding rule, businesses have an obligation to avoid making false or misleading representations of fact in the advertising claims, including on television ads, internet ads, and product packaging.
Though, a misleading advertising campaign could run afoul of the FDUTPA even if there are no technical claims of “fact.” The FDUTPA requires businesses to avoid making material misrepresentations and material omissions that put a false/misleading image in the mind of a reasonable consumer. If you have questions about false advertising the FDUTPA, an experienced Florida attorney will protect your rights.
Schedule a Confidential Consultation With an FDUTPA Lawyer
At Pike & Lustig, LLP, our Florida deceptive and unfair trade practices attorneys have the professional skills and legal expertise that you can count on during a complex case. If you have questions or concerns about misleading advertising and the FDUTPA, we can help. Give us a call now for a fully confidential case review. Our FDUTPA lawyers serve clients throughout Southeastern Florida, including in Miami, Miami Beach, Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, and Jupiter.