Advertising Standards and Guidelines

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Table of Contents
Introduction/Statement of Purpose
Focus of New Hope Natural Media's Advertising Standards
Standards and Guidelines
Working within the Industry
Comments, Suggestions and Concerns
Implementation

I. Product Safety
Standard I.A. Directions and Warnings
Standard I.B. Child Safety

Child Safety Guideline

II. Product Ingredients
Standard II.A. Quantitative Potency Statements
Standard II.B. Basis of Formulation
Standard II.C. Natural Flavors and Essential Oils

Natural Flavors and Essential Oils Guideline


Standard II.D. Common Names/Standard

Disclosure of Active Ingredients Guideline
Endangered Plants and Animals Guideline

III. Product Claims
Standard III.A. Substantiation of Health Benefit or Nutrient Content Statements

Substantiation of Health Benefit Statements Guidelines

Standard III.B. Superlative Statements
Standard III.C. Personnel or Process Statements
Standard III.D. Health Benefit Statement
Standard III.E. Organic Statement

Organic Statement Guideline

Standard III.F. Pesticide Free Statements
Standard III.G. "No" and "Free" Statements

"No" and "Free" Statements Guideline

Standard III.H. Cruelty-Free Statements Guidelines
Standard III.I. Recycled Statements

Recycled Statements Guideline
Standard III.J. Charitable Contribution Statements
Standard III.K Statements Involving Testing
Statements Involving Testing Guideline
Standard III.L. Disallowed Advertisements

IV. Advertising Methods/Techniques
Standard IV.A. Names and Addresses
Standard IV.B. Use of Surveys

Use of Surveys Guideline

Standard IV.C. Use of Quotes
Standard IV.D. Use of Disclaimers
Standard IV.E. Use of Photos and Illustrations
Standard IV.F. Use of Art and Technical Terms

Use of Art and Technical Terms Guideline

Standard IV.G. Use of Comparison and Negative Advertising

Use of Comparison and Negative Advertising Guideline

Standard IV.H. Use of Guarantees
Standard IV.I. Use of Information

Use of Information Guideline
Ethical Considerations Guideline

Appendix

Additional Resources

Introduction and Statement of Purpose
As publishers of magazines serving the natural products industry and its customers, New Hope Natural Media has established minimum standards for advertisements appearing in its publications.

Our goal is to enhance public health and safety, support industry self-regulation, and foster the responsible growth of our industry. We present these standards in a spirit of cooperation with current industry efforts to ensure quality and integrity. We also believe these standards will increase consumer confidence in products advertised in our publications and help consumers make educated choices

Advertisers are encouraged to review the entire document. Placement of advertising in our publications represents your agreement to participate in our Advertising Standards Program. But we want to emphasize that this document is a work in progress, open at all times to industry comment and review.

Focus of New Hope Natural Media's Advertising Standards
These standards cover four areas of focus:

  1. Product Safety
  2. Product Ingredients
  3. Product Claims
  4. Advertising Methods/Techniques

Standards and Guidelines
Each substandard contains "standards" and "guidelines". "Standards" are the minimum requirements which advertisements in all New Hope Natural Media publications must meet. If any advertising standard is less stringent than, or in conflict with, an applicable government regulation, the government regulation will take precedence. "Guidelines" which relate to long-term industry goals, are recommended but not required.

Working within the Industry
New Hope Natural Media views these standards as part of the larger industry effort to improve the health of the American people, the accuracy of information provided to the public, and the safety and integrity of the products they buy. We are pleased to work with manufacturers, distributors, brokers, retailers, advertising agencies, trade associations and other organizations in a mutual effort to accomplish these goals.

Comments, Suggestions and Concerns
This is a working document. Standards will be updated and refined as necessary. Because we want standards that are fair, reasonable, concise and understandable, we encourage comments, questions and concerns from industry members and groups. Please submit all questions or comments in writing to New Hope Natural Media, Advertising Standards Department, 1301 Spruce St., Boulder, CO 80302.

Implementation Plan

  • Advertisers are responsible for knowing and complying with all standards
  • New Hope Natural Media reserves the right to determine the eligibility of any advertisement for inclusion in any of its publications.

Unless New Hope Natural Media perceives a situation that truly compromises consumer safety or jeopardizes the integrity of our company or the industry, we will encourage advertisers to make any necessary corrections and make certain they have ample time to do so. New Hope Natural Media will strive to collect and review the contents of all advertisements, but we cannot guarantee that every potential deviation from our standards will be identified and communicated to advertisers. Please feel free to contact the Advertising Standards staff if you feel an advertisement in a New Hope publication is not in compliance with the Advertising Standards. Standards will be updated and refined as necessary, and advertisers will receive automatic updates.

These standards apply to advertisements in the publications of New Hope Natural Media only. Although New Hope Natural Media seeks to operate its Advertising Standards Program in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations, inclusion of an advertisement in one of New Hope Natural Media's publications does not serve as a guarantee that a governmental or regulatory agency will not take action against a particular advertisement under that agency's own authority. In addition, these standards do not constitute an approval system.

 

  1. Advertising material will be reviewed by New Hope Natural Media from the point of view of the reasonable consumer.
  2. Advertisers whose materials are deemed out of compliance will be notified. Lack of notification for noncompliance does not automatically signify compliance with New Hope Natural Media's Advertising Standards.
  3. The content of each ad will be considered on a case-by-case basis. New Hope Natural Media looks at both express and implied claims in advertising, so it is important for advertisers to include information that is needed to keep the ad from being deceptive.
  4. Advertisers are solely responsible for responding within the established deadlines for compliance.
  5. Preapproval of advertising material will be required of new advertisers not currently in compliance with established standards. Any advertiser may be asked to submit materials intended for placement in any of our publications for preapproval, solely at the discretion of New Hope Natural Media.
  6. As this document is further evaluated and refined, New Hope Natural Media will keep advertisers advised of any changes.

We believe that upholding these standards will ultimately benefit our readers, our advertisers and the industry. If we and our advertisers work together to create even higher levels of reader trust, we will surely see increased sales of natural products and an increased likelihood of continued self-regulation for our industry.

I. Product Safety
Purpose: To ensure the safety of products and services advertised in the publications of New Hope Natural Media.

Standard I.A. Directions and Warnings
Products or services advertised must be safe as promoted for intended use.

Standard I.B. Child Safety
Products advertised or marketed to appeal to children must have appropriate cautions or warnings to prevent misuse by children.

GUIDELINE: Child Safety
Products that are unsafe or inappropriate for use by children should not be marketed in a manner that is targeted toward children.

II. Product Ingredients
Purpose: To ensure all ingredients are listed honestly, potencies are true, origins are accurate, appropriate consumer cautions and warnings are made, and dietary benefits can be easily identified.

Standard II.A. Quantitative Potency Statements
1. Products advertising a specific amount of a dietary ingredient or a specific potency (with the exception of homeopathic products) must be tested to ensure that statements are accurate. Documentation of such testing should be available at the request of a New Hope Natural Media representative.

2. Potency terminology must be easily understood by a lay person with one exception: Homeopathic products may declare potency or dilution using methods outlined in the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States.

3. Substantiation for standardized potency statements must be made available at the request of a New Hope Natural Media representative.

Standard II.B. Basis of Formulation
1. All advertised homeopathic products must comply with the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States and the FDA Compliance Policy Guide, 7231.15, "Conditions under which Homeopathic Medicines May Be Marketed."

2. Products formulated using a specific philosophy should be identified. Example: "A traditional Chinese formula."

3. Products advertised to be "ancient" formulas should have documentation to support the claim, and contain only those ingredients originally included in the "ancient" formula.

4. Ancient formulas combined with modern ingredients should disclose these modifications to the original formula.

Standard II.C. Natural Flavors and Essential Oils
1. If the name of a fruit, spice, essential oil, or other flavor or fragrance is part of a product title, then that product must contain that substance. If it does not, a disclaimer must appear directly under the product name.

2. If the product contains only the essence of a flavor, then the word "flavored" should be an integral part of the product's description.

GUIDELINE: Natural Flavors and Essential Oils
Essential oils not extracted from a plant should be described as "artificial" or "synthetic." Descriptors such as "fragrance" or "essence" are not adequate.

Standard II.D. Common Names
Product ingredients listed in an advertisement must be described by their common or usual names, except for homeopathic products which must be labeled with the Latin binomial.

GUIDELINE: Disclosure of Active Ingredients
Laxatives, stimulants and bronchodilators should be clearly identified in advertising.

GUIDELINE: Endangered Plants and Animals
Advertisements of products consisting of or containing any ingredients derived from threatened or endangered plant or animal species are not recommended in any publication of New Hope Natural Media.

III. Product Claims
Purposes:

  • To ensure the truthfulness and accuracy of product statements.
  • To ensure substantiation and traceability of product statements.
  • To promote thorough understanding and knowledge of products and product statements.
  • To promote equal evaluation and comparison of like products.
  • To preserve the integrity and meaning of legitimate statements such as "organically grown," "cruelty free," "recycled" and "recyclable."
  • Standard III.A. Substantiation Of Health Benefit or Nutrient Content Statements
    1. Advertisers must have substantiation of health benefit statements, whether express or implied or contained in product names. Adequate substantiation, including, but not limited to, copies of published scientific studies, with journal name, date, volume, etc. must be provided at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative.

    2. A bibliography of research will not generally be adequate, unless it is accompanied by the above documentation.

    3. Advertisers must provide substantiation of nutrient or ingredient content claims, which may consist of a certificate of analysis or analytical results from a qualified testing laboratory.

    4. Testing must follow good laboratory practices including method validation, calibration and confirmation by an independent (FDA- registered if possible) laboratory.

    GUIDELINE: Substantiation Of Health Benefit Statements
    1. Advertisers are encouraged to provide and have available substantiation of all health benefit statements or ingredient content statements to any inquiring reader.

    2. All testing to validate health benefit statements or ingredient content statements should be performed by an independent, certified laboratory with published good laboratory practices.

    Standard III.B. Superlative Statements

    Superlative statements should only be made if they are true and not misleading. The advertisers should have substantiation of such statements and must provide it at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media Representative. Example: Superlative statements include: "best in the world," "best product in the U.S.," "only the finest herbs," "only the purest water," "the only," "the most potent," "the most effective."

    Standard III.C. Personnel Or Process Statements
    1. Individuals presented as doctors must have a full and accurate title such as N.D., M.D., Ph.D., D.Ed., O.M.D. Such individuals must disclose details of their education and training at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative.

    2. Titles and initials must be stated clearly and, if not commonly known, must be spelled out or explained.

    3. Statements about facilities, staff, quality control procedures, manufacturing processes or testing must not be overstated. Proof of such practices or test results must be supplied at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative.

    Standard III.D. Health Benefit Statements
    1. Product advertisements should not claim to diagnose, mitigate, treat, cure or prevent any diseases including, but not limited to, cancer, heart disease, AIDS, diabetes or Alzheimer's disease.

    2. Product advertisements making or implying benefit statements for the above mentioned diseases must do so in language that clearly defines the benefits and follows current FTC policies.

    3. Substantial scientific data, to be determined at the discretion of New Hope Natural Media, will be required to support a benefit statement pertaining to such diseases. The data, if published, must include journal name, date, volume, etc.

    Standard III.E. Organic Statements
    1. "Organic" must be used truthfully in all statements.

    2. All organic production statements must be in compliance with applicable state and federal laws.

    3. Advertisements claiming "certified" organically grown or processed must have on file the appropriate certification documents. Such documentation must be available at the request of a New Hope Natural Media representative.

    4. Advertisements claiming a product or ingredients are organically grown but do not have a third-party certification must state the following, in writing, at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative:

    1. Who determined the product or ingredients to be organic?
    2. Which organic law or standard is used?
    3. Do all the processing facilities that handled the product comply with that law or standard?

    5. Blanket statements such as "all ingredients are organically grown or wild-crafted" must be documented. Information supporting such statements must be available at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative.

    GUIDELINE: Organic Statements
    Advertisers should provide substantiation of organic statements and/or organic certification documents at the request of any inquiring reader.

    Standard III.F. Pesticide Free Statements
    Advertised claims involving "pesticide free," "unsprayed" etc. must be documented. Information supporting such statements must be available at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative.

    Standard III.G. "No" and "Free" Statements
    1. "Absolute" terms describe the amount of nutrient in one serving of food. When these terms such as "No," "low," "high," "lite," "free," and "lean" are used, they must comply with the FTC Policy Statement on Food Advertising and the FDA's definitions for nutrient content terms.

    2. Such statements must not be deceptive and must fully disclose relevant facts. Example: A statement of "no salt added" is deceptive if the product contains a high amount of sodium from hydrolyzed vegetable protein. "No oil" is deceptive when the product is naturally high in fat such as peanuts.

    3. Products advertised to be free of ingredients with a particular activity must disclose the presence of ingredients with similar activity. Example: Products that contain no caffeine, but do contain ephedrine.

    4. Such statements must be substantiated with documentation available at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative.

    GUIDELINE: "No" and "Free" Statements
    If a product is said to be free of a substance that actually remains in residual amounts, the residual amount should be disclosed.

    GUIDELINE: Cruelty-Free Statements
    1. Products advertised as "cruelty free" and "not tested on animals" should comply with criteria established by such animal protection organizations as PETA and NAVS.

    2. Documentation of "cruelty free" and "not tested on animals" statements should be available at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative.

    Standard III.I. Recycled Statements
    "Recycled" and "recyclable" statements must be truthful and comply with applicable parts of FTC Guides for the use of Environmental Claims and EPA regulations.

    GUIDELINE: Recycled Statements
    "Recycled" and "recyclable" statements should be accurate and supported by a network of recycling centers in the U.S.

    Standard III.J. Charitable Contribution Statements
    Charitable contribution statements must be supported by documentation and made available at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative.

    Standard III.K. Statements Involving Testing
    1. Test results referred to in advertisements must be made available at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative.

    2. Testing statements must be significant and relevant, and not confusing or deceptive.

    3. Statements and conclusions made about test results must be logically derived from and supported by test data.

    4. Photos and data derived from tests, including stylistic or artistic renditions must be accurately and objectively labeled and interpreted.

    GUIDELINE: Statements Involving Testing
    1. Advertisers are encouraged to provide test results at the request of any inquiring reader.

    2. Advertisers should disclose the source of funding for any tests cited.

    Standard III.L. Disallowed Advertisements
    The following product advertisements are prohibited in any publication of New Hope Natural Media:

    • Alternatives to street drugs
    • Recreational euphoriants/stimulants
    • Sexual stimulants/enhancers

    New Hope Natural Media evaluates all advertisements as a whole, including text, product names and images used. New Hope Natural Media allows advertisements for products that support natural sexual function, but not those that seek to enhance sexual pleasure or endurance.

    IV. Advertising Methods/Techniques
    Purposes:

  • To ensure understanding and traceability of all advertised products.
  • To promote equal evaluation and comparison of like products.
  • To ensure guarantees are fair and honored.
  • GUIDELINE: Names and Addresses
    Product advertisements should include the full name of the manufacturer or distributor, complete address, phone number and website.

    Standard IV.A. Use of Surveys
    1. Advertisers citing survey statistics and drawing conclusions from those surveys must have on file the following information:

    • Methodology of survey
    • Who conducted the survey
    • The date the survey was conducted
    • A written offer explaining how to obtain a copy of the survey.

    2. The above information must be made available at the request of a New Hope Natural Media representative.

    3. Survey results must not be misrepresented.

    GUIDELINE: Use of Surveys
    The following information should be made available to any inquiring reader:

    1. Selection criteria for survey population
    2. Number of people surveyed
    3. Margin of error of the survey
    4. Source of funding for the survey.

    Standard IV.B. Use of Quotes
    1. Quotes must not be misrepresented by being taken out of context.

    2. Endorsements by consumers must represent what the typical experience of consumers would be, not the experience of just a few customers. Simply stating that "Not all consumers will get these results" or "Your results may vary" is not enough.

    3. Endorsement quotes must cite the speaker, date and source of the quote. All consumer and expert endorsements should follow the FTC Guides Concerning the Use of Testimonials and Endorsements.

    Standard IV.C. Use of Disclaimers
    Advertisers should not use fine print disclaimers to contradict other statements in an ad or to clear up misimpressions that the ad would leave otherwise.

    Standard IV.D. Use of Photos and Illustrations
    1. Photos and illustrations may not be deceptive or misleading.

    2. Photos used in an advertisement that depict any aspect of a product's processing, manufacture or test must be of the manufacturers' facility, or accurately labeled with the name of the facility pictured and its relationship to the exhibitor's product.

    3. Before/after and comparison photos must be used in the following manner:

    • Include a caption stating the time of the first photo and the time of the second photo.
    • Exposure and print techniques must be identical for each photo.

    4. Photos and illustrations should not contain additional misleading features or characteristics.

    Standard IV.E. Use of Art and Technical Terms
    1. Artistic or contrived terms used in advertisements must be understandable.

    2. The use of a term must not differ from its commonly accepted meaning.

    GUIDELINE: Use of Art and Technical Terms
    A coined term or descriptive phrase should not be used to imply one products' superiority over another solely by virtue of the use of that coined term or phrase.

    Standard IV.F. Use of Comparison and Negative Advertising
    1. All comparison and negative advertising must comply with FTC policies. FTC defines comparison advertising as that which "compares alternative brands on objectively measurable attributes or price and identifies the alternative brand by name, illustration or other distinctive information."

    2. Negative statements about companies or products should be thoroughly documented and such documentation made available at the request of a designated New Hope Natural Media representative

    GUIDELINE: Use of Comparison and Negative Advertising
    Data cited should be made available on request to any inquiring reader.

    Standard IV.G. Use of Guarantees
    1. Guarantees made in an advertisements must be easily understandable, must not be misleading, and must state whether additional terms and/or conditions apply. Advertisements should follow the FTC Guides for the Advertising of Warranties and Guarantees.

    2. Companies offering guarantees must honor the guarantee.

    Standard IV.H. Use of Information
    The advertiser is responsible for the accuracy of all information present in the advertisement.

    GUIDELINE: Use of Information
    Advertisers are encouraged to provide:

    1. Information that is primarily educational and helps to better understand the product.

    2. Information that states product limitations and encourages an integrated approach to wellness using a variety of techniques.

    3. Information from an impartial third party.

    4. Information about the cultural context of use or philosophical basis of formulation.

    5. Information which addresses cultivation techniques and ingredient and product processing methods.

    6. Information that explains technical terms and cites references for any statements made.

    GUIDELINE: Standard IV.I. Ethical Considerations
    Advertisers are requested to adhere to ethical considerations in areas including, but not limited to, the following:

    1. Racism
    2. Sexism
    3. Sexually explicit materials
    4. Animal cruelty
    5. Decorum
    6. Environmental concerns.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION on governmental regulations that apply to advertising dietary supplements in the United States, please refer to the Federal Trade Commission's guide, Dietary Supplements: An Advertising Guide for Industry. This document can be found at the following internet address:

    http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/pubs/buspubs/dietsupp.htm

    Appendix

    Glossary of Acronyms
    EPA­ Environmental Protection Agency (www.epa.gov)

    FTC­ Federal Trade Commission (www.ftc.gov)

    FDA­ Food and Drug Administration (www.fda.gov)

    HPUS­ Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States (www.hpus.com)

    NAVS­ National Anti-Vivisection Society (www.navs.org)

    PETA­ People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (www.peta-online.com)

     

    Table of Contents | Product Safety | Product Ingredients | Product Claims
    Advertising Methods | Appendix

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