US company promises end to slimming adsIt failed to provide evidence to back its claims
22 June 2007
A US company has promised to stop targeting British consumers with adverts for quick-fix slimming products.
It comes after more than 120,000 UK households received mailings promoting the weight loss qualities of the SlimBall.
The company behind the mailings – Kirkwood Advertising – described the device as a 'surgery free gastric balloon' and the 'No.1 weight loss treatment that's beating obesity in the USA'.
Consumers were told that a 'bio-granule' taken 15 minutes before a meal would swell the stomach by up to fifty times its original size and suppressed users' appetites, ensuring safe and fast weight loss.
More than 4,000 people in the UK placed orders for the treatments, which cost up to £45.
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) asked Kirkwood Advertising to back up the claims but the company failed to provide any proper evidence.
Instead it said it would stop sending the mailings to UK consumers.
The OFT's Director of Consumer Affairs and Trading Standards, Christine Wade, said: 'Lots of people are looking for an easy way to lose weight.
‘Sadly mailings that promise quick fixes rarely deliver.'
Consumers who are unsure about claims made in mailings offering easy weight loss 'treatments' or 'health cures' should contact Consumer Direct for clear, practical advice on 08454 04 05 06 or visit the Consumer Direct web site before they part with any money.