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Pure Salmon Campaign sparks FTC ad investigation

" ... the ad failed to mention that farmed salmon has been found to contain artificial coloring, toxic by-products and cancer-causing contaminants", press release says

February 20, 2007


Pure Salmon Campaign sparks FTC ad investigation

The Pure Salmon Campaign, a global project of the National Environmental Trust, has issued a press release announcing the U.S. Federal Trade Commission has initiated a formal law enforcement investigation against Salmon of the Americas, Inc.

The investigation was sparked in response to the February 2006 petition filed by Pure Salmon challenging the industry group's advertising and promotion of farmed salmon. The challenged ad appeared in the New York Times Magazine in November 2005 and pointed to the "alleged health benefits of farmed salmon" and encouraged women of childbearing age and young children to eat unlimited quantities.

"However, the ad failed to mention that farmed salmon has been found to contain artificial coloring, toxic by-products and cancer-causing contaminants", the press release says.

According to a letter from the FTC to the law firm representing SOTA, "The staff was concerned that the advertising at issue represented, expressly or by implication and without any qualification, that consumption of ocean-farmed salmon by pregnant women and nursing mothers provides substantial benefits for developing fetuses and nursing infants without any offsetting health concerns."

The letter also stated that, "The staff was concerned that in the context of the advertising at issue, SOTA's advertising might be likely to mislead reasonable consumers, through its failure to disclose that women who are or might become pregnant, nursing mothers, and children ages 12 or younger should consume no more than one or two servings (up to 12 ounces) per week of a variety of fish and shellfish, including ocean-farmed salmon."

"The FTC's letter makes clear they are confident that their concerns have been heard by SOTA and it demonstrates the FTC's belief that steps will be taken to not repeat what has happened before," continued Medine.

"The FTC just scored a big win for the public by agreeing that the ad was misleading," said Andrea Kavanagh, director of the Pure Salmon Campaign. "The public needs to know that the risks clearly outweigh the benefits of eating an unlimited amount of farm-raised salmon."

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