Lawsuits Highlight Importance of Independently Certified Aloe Vera in Products
Recent class action lawsuits for
aloe vera products have many retailers rethinking the importance of independent
third-party certification for the products that they sell. Starting in 2016,
consumers in multiple states brought class action lawsuits against retailers
marketing aloe vera products. According to these lawsuits, when plaintiffs had
the products tested, results showed they contained no trace of acetylated
mannan (acemannan), the polysaccharide component of aloe vera that is used to
authenticate this botanical species. If a consumer product contains no
acemannan, the product cannot be confirmed to contain aloe vera.
With testing laboratories and
procedures becoming less costly and more widely available to today’s average
consumers and law firms, manufacturers and retailers should expect these types
of lawsuits to continue. While large
national retailers may have the resources to meet and overcome these costly and
time-consuming legal challenges, they still suffer the negative effects of
adverse publicity and loss of consumer confidence.
Is your company’s reputation
among consumers important to you? Are you concerned about the quality and
authenticity of the ingredients used in the products you sell? In this era of
social media and online reviews, have you taken steps to protect yourself? The International Aloe Science Council (IASC) certification
program for aloe raw materials and finished products provides a means for
retailers to demonstrate their commitment to supplying quality products that
meet the expectations of their customers.
Retailers can reduce the risk of
such lawsuits and more importantly, the negative impact to their reputations by
specifying that the manufacturers of their aloe vera products use only aloe
vera that has been certified by the IASC. This ensures the
products you sell contain authentic aloe vera instead of substandard material.
Manufacturers may try to save a few dollars by buying the cheapest aloe vera
raw material, but this increases your risk that the product may become the
target of a lawsuit claiming deceptive business practices.
IASC is a not-for-profit
association founded in 1980 to protect consumers of aloe vera and aloe
vera-based products from adulteration and products falsely labeled as
containing aloe vera. The IASC developed its certification programs so the aloe
industry can submit their facilities and products to an independent audit and
testing program. Companies who display the IASC Certification Seal on their
products and in their literature are assuring their customers that the aloe
vera used is pure and meets the quality standards of the IASC.