More than $2 million in refunds are being offered to consumers who bought children’s vitamins that claimed to contain far more nutritional substance than they actually did. The vitamin’s maker, NBTY, and two of its subsidiaries, Rexall Sundown and NatureSmart, claimed in advertising and on packages of its Disney and Marvel Complete Tablets that the vitamins contained 100 percent of a child’s daily requirement of DHA. However, in some cases the vitamins were found to contain only a tiny fraction of DHA.
DHA is an omega-3 fatty acid found in fish. The vitamins’ packages claim the DHA in its vitamins supports healthy vision and brain development especially in young children, however the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) says those claims are unsupported.
The amount of DHA in the Disney princesses-, Winnie the Pooh-, Nemo- and Spider-Man-themed vitamins was found to be only one-thousandth of what was listed on the vitamins’ label per serving for children 4 years of age and older. For younger children ages 2-4, the amount of DHA was only five-10-thousandth of what the packaging claimed.
The vitamins were sold for between $4 and $8 at CVS Pharmacy, Wal-Mart, Target, Walgreens, Kroger, Kmart, Meijer, and Rite Aide. They were also available online.
The refund offer was made after the manufacturer was slapped with a lawsuit alleging it made false and deceptive advertising claims about its vitamins. Consumers who believe they may have purchased the nutritional supplements between May 1, 2008 and September 30, 2010, can file a claim through the FTC’s website at www.FTC.gov through October 12.