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Can Crest Toothpaste Really Repair Your Gums?

In 2021, at least five lawsuits have been filed against Procter & Gamble claiming that Crest Gum & Enamel Repair toothpaste is being deceptively marketed. [Suit #1, suit #2 pre-amendment, and suit #3]

Crest Gum and Enamel Repair

The lawyers contend that this Crest toothpaste cannot “repair” gums.

*MOUSE PRINT:

Allegations from some of the cases…

…gums that have suffered structural damage cannot be repaired, restored, or re-grown through use of the Product. The only way to repair gums is through periodontal treatment, including cosmetic dental surgery such as gum grafting.

…receding gums do not grow back; once the gum tissue has pulled back and away from teeth, it’s gone for good.

…the Product’s active ingredient –Stannous Fluoride .454% (.14% W/V Fluoride Ion) – which is common to most toothpastes, provides no special gum “repair” benefits.

With respect to gum care, all a toothpaste can really do is control, reduce, or prevent gingivitis by helping to remove plaque. Gingivitis is a common and mild form of gum disease that causes irritation, redness and swelling where your gum meets the base of your teeth.

So the lawyers claim that purchasers have been misled, would not have bought the product, or would have paid less than the premium price that P&G charges had they known the true nature of this toothpaste to start with.

P&G presumably denies the charges but best we can tell, P&G has not formally filed answers to the complaints yet.

One of the lawyers predicts what one of P&G’s defenses might be and he makes a pre-emptive grammatical argument against it. He expects P&G to say that in the phrase “Gum and Enamel Repair” that the word “gum” does not modify the word “Repair.” In essence, he’s suggesting that P&G will likely claim this is a “gum toothpaste” and an “enamel repair toothpaste.” The consumer lawyer says the name of the product follows normal parallel structure and most consumers would understand it to mean the product is for “gum repair” and “enamel repair.”.

What do you think? Do these cases have any teeth?

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Goya: We Use Only #1 Grade Beans*?

Goya has run a few TV commercials that tout the quality of their chickpeas. Here’s one of them.

Goya claims it “uses only U.S. #1 grade beans*.” But that pesky asterisk suggests there’s more to the story.

MOUSE PRINT*:

Goya uses #1 beans

That almost impossible to read fine print disclaimer says:

“As defined by the USDA, when mother nature permits.”

What does that mean? The claim sounds aspirational — we’ll try to provide you with top quality beans except if the crop we harvest isn’t so great.

The USDA has very specific regulations for when a batch of beans can be labeled U.S. No. 1, 2, or 3. It all has to do with the number of defects and damaged beans in the batch, as well as the presence of foreign objects.

MOUSE PRINT*:

USDA chickpea grades

We asked the folks at Goya what their fine print exception meant, and how often they have a bad harvest. They did not respond.

Goya seems to be making a habit of bucking the system. They were challenged by a competitor over claims that their pasta was the favorite of Puerto Rico. Two arms of the BBB ruled again them.

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Thanks for Nothing — Summer 2021

A few times a year we take a step back to roll our eyes at some companies’ practices or promotions that are real head-scratchers. Here is this summer’s crop of sellers not doing shoppers any favors in these instances.

Example #1

If this bag of grass originally sold for a thousand dollars, it must have included a lot of weed.

*MOUSE PRINT:

grass

Thanks for nothing Farm & Home Supply.


Example #2

A consumer on Reddit posted a picture of an unusual warning on the box of the HD television set that he just bought. And it was in pretty big type.

*MOUSE PRINT:

Sceptre save the box

What? Your TV warranty is void if you don’t save the box it came in for possible future use if you need to move the TV or send it in for repairs? I suspect most people are not in the habit of reading those boxes to learn about their warranty rights, or save those huge things at home. Thanks for nothing, Sceptre.


Example #3

Cell companies are busy promoting their new 5G cell networks with both largest size and fastest speed claims. Boost Mobile recently advertised that it had the largest 5G network like this:

*MOUSE PRINT:

Boost 5G

Nothing like a little pictorial misrepresentation to make you think that their 5G network is possibly larger than it really is. Can’t they try to make the map at least somewhat accurate? Thanks for nothing, Boost.


Example #4

Herb W. of Seattle, renown consumer reporter from KOMO radio and Consumers’ Checkbook, sent us a picture of a package of Impossible Foods’ plant-based burger “meat” which is sold at the fresh meat counter in supermarkets.

Impossible Foods

He wanted to check the freshness date on the package, but was having a devil of a time doing so. The date shown on that sticker above is not the sell-by date incidentally.

*MOUSE PRINT:

Impossible date

There it was on the edge of the package, and true to their name, it was almost impossible to read. (And we photo-enhanced the above picture to make it barely readable.) Why make it so difficult for shoppers to see this important information? Thanks for nothing, Impossible Foods.


If you find an advertisement or product label suitable for featuring in a future edition of “Thanks for Nothing,” please send a clear photo or screenshot to edgar(at symbol)MousePrint.org . Thanks.

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