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Nutramax Laboratories, Inc.; Analysis to Aid Public Comment

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Federal Trade Commission.

ACTION:

Proposed consent agreement.

SUMMARY:

The consent agreement in this matter settles alleged violations of federal law prohibiting unfair or deceptive acts or practices or unfair methods of competition. The attached Analysis to Aid Public Comment describes both the allegations in the draft complaint that accompanies the consent agreement and the terms of the consent order—embodied in the consent agreement—that would settle these allegations.

DATES:

Comments must be received on or before August 12, 2004.

ADDRESSES:

Comments should refer to “Nutramax Laboratories, Inc., File No. 032 3052,” to facilitate the organization of comments. A comment filed in paper form should include this reference both in the text and on the envelope, and should be mailed or delivered to the following address: Federal Trade Commission/Office of the Secretary, Room H-159, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20580. Comments containing confidential material must be filed in paper form, as explained in the Supplementary Information section. The FTC is requesting that any comment filed in paper form be sent by courier or overnight service, if possible, because U.S. postal mail in the Washington area and at the Commission is subject to delay due to heightened security precautions. Comments filed in electronic form (except comments containing any confidential material) should be sent to the following e-mail box: consentagreement@ftc.gov.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Shira Modell, FTC, Bureau of Consumer Protection, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20580, (202) 326-3116.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Pursuant to Section 6(f) of the Federal Trade Commission Act, 38 Stat. 721, 15 U.S.C. 46(f), and § 2.34 of the Commission's Rules of Practice, 16 CFR 2.34, notice is hereby given that the above-captioned consent agreement containing a consent order to cease and desist, having been filed with and accepted, subject to final approval, by the Commission, has been placed on the public record for a period of thirty (30) days. The following Analysis to Aid Public Comment describes the terms of the consent agreement, and the allegations in the complaint. An electronic copy of the full text of the consent agreement package can be obtained from the FTC Home Page (for July 13, 2004), on the World Wide Web, at http://www.ftc.gov/​os/​2004/​07/​index.htm. A paper copy can be obtained from the FTC Public Reference Room, Room 130-H, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20580, either in person or by calling (202) 326-2222.

Public comments are invited, and may be filed with the Commission in either paper or electronic form. Written comments must be submitted on or before August 12, 2004. Comments should refer to “Nutramax Laboratories, Inc., File No. 032 3052,” to facilitate the organization of comments. A comment filed in paper form should include this reference both in the text and on the envelope, and should be mailed or delivered to the following address: Federal Trade Commission/Office of the Secretary, Room H-159, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20580. If the comment contains any material for which confidential treatment is requested, it must be filed in paper (rather than electronic) form, and the first page of the document must be clearly labeled “Confidential.” [1] The FTC is requesting Start Printed Page 45067that any comment filed in paper form be sent by courier or overnight service, if possible, because U.S. postal mail in the Washington area and at the Commission is subject to delay due to heightened security precautions. Comments filed in electronic form should be sent to the following e-mail box: consentagreement@ftc.gov.

The FTC Act and other laws the Commission administers permit the collection of public comments to consider and use in this proceeding as appropriate. All timely and responsive public comments, whether filed in paper or electronic form, will be considered by the Commission, and will be available to the public on the FTC Web site, to the extent practicable, at www.ftc.gov. As a matter of discretion, the FTC makes every effort to remove home contact information for individuals from the public comments it receives before placing those comments on the FTC Web site. More information, including routine uses permitted by the Privacy Act, may be found in the FTC's privacy policy, at http://www.ftc.gov/​ftc/​privacy.htm.

Analysis of Proposed Consent Order to Aid Public Comment

The Federal Trade Commission has accepted, subject to final approval, an agreement containing a consent order from Nutramax Laboratories, Inc. (“Nutramax”).

The proposed consent order has been placed on the public record for thirty (30) days for receipt of comments by interested persons. Comments received during this period will become part of the public record. After thirty (30) days, the Commission will again review the agreement and the comments received, and will decide whether it should withdraw from the agreement or make final the agreement's proposed order.

This matter involves the advertising and promotion of Senior Moment, a dietary supplement containing cerebral phospholipids and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). According to the FTC complaint, Nutramax represented that Senior Moment prevents memory loss and restores lost memory function in adults of all ages. The complaint alleges that the company failed to have substantiation for these claims. It further alleges that Nutramax falsely represented that scientific studies prove that Senior Moment restores lost memory function in adults of all ages.

The proposed consent order contains provisions designed to prevent Nutramax from engaging in similar acts and practices in the future.

Part I of the order requires Nutramax to have competent and reliable scientific evidence substantiating any claims that Senior Moment or any substantially similar product prevents memory loss or restores lost memory function.

Part II requires Nutramax to have competent and reliable scientific evidence substantiating any claims about the benefits, performance or efficacy of any food, drug, dietary supplement, device or service sold for human use or consumption for cognitive functions or processes, or the treatment, cure, mitigation, alleviation of the symptoms, prevention, or reduction in the risk of any related disease or disorder. Although the order does not prohibit the trade name “Senior Moment,” it does require the respondent to have competent and reliable scientific evidence to substantiate any covered claims conveyed directly or by implication through the use of the product name.

Part III prohibits any misrepresentation of the existence, contents, validity, results, conclusions, or interpretations of any test or study, in connection with the marketing or sale of any product or program for human cognitive function or processes.

Part IV permits any representation for any product that is permitted in labeling for such product pursuant to regulations promulgated by FDA pursuant to the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act of 1990.

Parts V through VIII of the order require Nutramax to keep copies of relevant advertisements and materials substantiating claims made in the advertisements; to provide copies of the order to certain of its personnel; to notify the Commission of changes in corporate structure; and to file compliance reports with the Commission. Part IX provides that the order will terminate after twenty (20) years under certain circumstances.

The purpose of this analysis is to facilitate public comment on the proposed order, and it is not intended to constitute an official interpretation of the agreement and proposed order or to modify in any way their terms.

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By direction of the Commission.

Donald S. Clark,

Secretary.

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Footnotes

1.  Commission Rule 4.2(d), 16 CFR 4.2(d). The comment must be accompanied by an explicit request for confidential treatment, including the factual and legal basis for the request, and must identify the specific portions of the comment to be withheld from the public record. The request will be granted or denied by the Commission's General Counsel, consistent with applicable law and the public interest. See Commission Rule 4.9(c), 16 CFR 4.9(c).

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[FR Doc. 04-17156 Filed 7-27-04; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6750-01-P