Infowars among latest to draw FDA warning over COVID-19 claims
Door signs with a liquid fulvic acid concentrate that promise antiviral benefits needed to fight COVID-19 infection. Silver-based toothpaste and other oral health products featured in promotional videos to fight viruses like COVID-19. These are the latest products to be announced by the FDA for illegal marketing claims.
The agency drew consumers’ attention to the potential for products marketed with fraudulent COVID-19 claims in mid-March. “These fraudulent products that claim to cure, treat, or prevent COVID-19 have not been tested for safety or effectiveness by the FDA and could be dangerous to you and your family,” the agency said in the Consumer Update. In early March, they sent a series of warning letters and maintained a COVID-19 scam page with letters, news and updates.
Most recently, on April 8, the agency sent a warning letter to British Columbia, Canada-based NRP Organics Ltd. notifying the FDA that fraudulent claims had been made for its products sold in the US, Fortify Humic Beverage Concentrate and Electrify Fulvic Beverage Concentrate ‘was uncovered through the company’s various websites and social media pages. The letter warned that claims such as “HUMIC SUBSTANCES ARE CLINICALLY PROVEN ANTI-VIRAL THAT COVID-19 FIGHTING COVID-19” and “CORONAVIRUS CURES” were warned. . . PROTECT THEM AND THOSE WHO LOVE YOU WITH HUMIC AND FULVIC ANTIVIRUS! “Make these products unapproved and mislabelled drugs.
On March 25, Abbotsford News reported complaints from local residents about leaflets posted on their front doors advertising Fulvic products as antiviral and immune-boosting, as well as warnings and tips related to COVID-19.
On April 9, the FDA sent a similar warning to Alex Jones and Free Speech Systems LLC, better known as Infowars, the controversial far-right website known for conspiracy theories. One of the videos called up by the FDA for fraudulent claims was titled, “Alex Jones: Deep State With Coronavirus Fear And Panic To Destroy Our Country.” Jones, a far-right radio host, has promoted conspiracy theories about the Sandy Hook shootings and the 9/11 attacks and is the alleged one-time confidante of President Donald Trump.
According to the FDA, the company’s Infowars and Banned.Video websites directed visitors to the Infowars Store, where nanosilver products such as Superblue Silver Immune Gargle, SuperSilver Whitening Toothpaste, SuperSilver Wound Dressing Gel and Superblue Fluoride Free Toothpaste are used were for sale in the United States and were marketed with a claim to alleviate, prevent, treat, diagnose, or cure COVID-19.
In another video highlighted in the letter, “Experts say Trump has to seal the border like Israel and Italy or face a massive coronavirus surge,” the statement read, “I’m not going to elaborate on this, I will Just tell you. Just for your daily life, your gums and teeth, as well as regular viruses and bacteria, the patented nano-silver that we have, the Pentagon came out and documented, and Homeland Security said this stuff was the entire SARS corona Family kills at close range. “
The FDA gave each company 48 hours to notify the agency of the steps they were taking or were taking to correct the violations.
At the time of going to press, the Infowars videos listed in the FDA warning letter and the Infowars Store pages for the named products had been removed. However, a Google cached version of the product page for the Superblue Flouride Free Toothpaste contained the disclaimer: “The products on this website are not intended to cure, treat, prevent or alleviate any disease, including the novel coronavirus. Any suggestion to the contrary is wrong and is expressly rejected. “
NRP Organics websites, http://www.nrporganics.com and www.coronaviruscures.com, Facebook and Instagram pages have also been shut down / removed. However, prior to removal, the NPRorganics.com website contained a disclaimer. The products have not been rated by Health Canada or the US Food and Drug Administration and, according to Abbotsford News, are not intended to be used to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
The company’s co-founders include real estate agent James Rutherford and OpenGovCA’s marketing pro Sheila Randall. According to a report by British Columbia-based Breaker News, the couple have suspended the business and door flyer campaign but denied their intent to mislead consumers.
Requests to each company for an update and comment went unanswered.