Commercial airing of cooking oil ad stopped

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Sunday, May 27, 2012

MANILA -- The Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) has ordered Southeast Asia Foods Inc. (Safi), maker of Golden Fiesta Cooking Oil, to stop airing its commercial for containing "misleading claims."

Safi may also face legal and administrative sanctions for the violation, the order said.

The FDA’s order resulted from a complaint of San Pablo Manufacturing Corp. that Golden Fiesta’s commercials made unfounded claims -- may be re-used for frying food for seven times without affecting the product’s quality, color, or appearance; and 50 percent less saturated than regular oil.

As such, Safi was directed "under pain of legal and/or administrative sanctions, to immediately cease and desist from further airing the same violative advertisement."

FDA, in its resolution, also ordered Safi, pursuant to Section 2, Article 7, Book 3 of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of Republic Act 9711, to reply or comment within a non-extendible period of 10 days from receipt of the order "as to why no further administrative or legal action should be taken against you and your establishment for the aforesaid violation."

Suzette H. Lazo, acting director IV of FDA, said her office conducted an evaluation of the subject of the complaint and was confirmed to be in violation of the said provision that stated, "no claim in the advertisement, promotion, and sponsorship, and other marketing activities shall be made other than those contained in the approved label or packaging of the health product, or as duly approved by the FDA."

SPMC belongs to the government sequestered CIIF-Oil Mills Group and is the maker of market leader Minola Cooking Oil.

With the development, advertising practitioners in the edible oil industry urged the Advertising Board to scrutinize further the claims of advertisers before approving their advertisements to protect the Filipino consumers from "ridiculous claims" and uphold the "truth in advertising."

Dr. Guia Sison, an expert in internal medicine and occupational medicine, said that at the most, cooking oil can be used for up to three times only as repeated heating will cause the oil to produce rancid taste, and release the cancer-causing Polyaromatic hydrocarbon. It will also eliminate the Vitamin fortification in the product, which negates the objective of the law on vitamin fortification. (PNA)

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