Phrases you Won’t See on a Label Anymore
The food, consumables and many other industries have the responsibility of ensuring that their consumers are properly informed before making any purchases; which is why labels have become a standard on all retail products. And while they are generally well governed according to the Consumer Protection Act of 2008, many manufacturers try to give themselves an edge by employing the use of clever rhetoric to make the product seem more attractive, or indeed less unattractive. These practices can be likened to the sort of cigarette ads we used to see in the 90s that made smoking seem like a sporting thing to do, drinking as a social one, or has lauded the health benefits of sugar. Looking at these events in hindsight, it’s hard to imagine that so many of us were fooled by underhanded marketing and packaging strategies. Fast forward many years on, and regulations governing the use of language has tightened up a little. But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t any loopholes that manufacturers and marketers still jump through in a bid to be just a little dishonest, in order to unload their products on to you. So, to heighten your awareness of these tactics, here are some phrases which you may never see on labels ever again, since they don’t fall into regulatory guidelines; as well as the sneaky little snippets that have popped up in their stead.
This Product is Rich in…
If the product is made from natural resources, the chances are that it will be rich in something. I’ll use the example of cereals which I choose not to name. They could once boast being rich in iron or as an excellent source of vitamins, minerals and calcium. In reality, most of these cereals are fairly basic where their nutritional value is concerned. They are also generally slathered with sugar when eaten, and their ‘source’ of calcium is merely the milk that you need to put in it to make it even remotely edible. Since regulations were updated in 2008, you can now expect the cliché ‘rich in’ line to be replaced with ‘high in’, or ‘free from’ as their nutritional information, or rather their advertising ploy.
This Product Comes with Added…
This is also a common advertising ploy cleverly disguised as nutritional information. Stating that a product comes with any added nutrients is in fact not stating much. Is that nutrient a normal part of the process? Does it serve any actual nutritional benefit, or has it just been cherry picked to convince customers of unrealistic health benefits?
This is one of my favourite lines, and you see it almost everywhere; especially with regards to pharmaceutical or hygiene products. Toothpaste brands are particularly guilty of saying that their product is clinically proven. Clinically proven as what? The boxes never seem to be specific enough. Still, those two words are often enough to build trust in most consumers, however unfounded it may be.
Contact MRA Regulation to Learn More
As you can see, the careful selection of wording and what information to include on your labels and packaging is important not only for the image of your own product, but for the wellbeing and decision making power of your customers. Speak to a consultant at MRA Regulatory Consulting to find out more, or visit our website for further information.