Obama’s FDA: Cheerios Are a “Drug” and Can’t Make Health Claims

The Obama administration blunders onward in its “progressive” (i.e., authoritarian) absurdities. According to CBS News, now the FDA has sent a letter to General Mills, the makers of Cheerios, warning them to stop including health claims in their advertising not because they are false, but because such claims make Cheerios a “drug” which “may not be legally marketed with the above claims in the United States without an approved new drug application.”

Current boxes of Cheerios are touting what the company calls exciting news—the cereal’s ability to help lower cholesterol 10 percent in one month. . . . According to a letter from the FDA General Mills’ advertising violates the federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. The agency said claims that Cheerios ingredients can lower cholesterol within a certain amount of time, all while providing cancer-fighting and heart-healthy benefits, essentially makes Cheerios “a drug” by their definition. . . . The FDA gave General Mills 15 days to explain how it will correct the statements on Cheerios boxes. . . . In a statement issued Tuesday, General Mills said this dispute is over language, not science. The company pointed out that the FDA’a complaint doesn’t actually question whether Cheerios can help lower cholesterol levels—it only talks about how the health benefits are advertised.

For an extensive critical analysis of the enormous harms from and alternatives to the FDA food and drug bureaucracy and police, see our website FDAReview.org.

David J. Theroux is Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Independent Institute.
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