Nationwide Promoting Division Finds Sure HEPA Claims for Shark Air Purifiers Supported; SharkNinja Appeals Suggestion to Modify or Discontinue Others – Lexology
In a problem introduced by Dyson, Inc., the Nationwide Promoting Division (NAD) of BBB Nationwide Applications decided that SharkNinja Working LLC supplied an inexpensive foundation for claims that its Shark Air Air purifier 4 meets and even exceeds HEPA requirements however really useful that Shark discontinue these similar claims for its Air Air purifier 6.
The challenged claims embrace:
- “Seize 99.97% of mud, dander, odors, and extra.”
- “Seize 99.98% of enormous, small, & micro-size particles.”
NAD additionally really useful that Shark:
- Discontinue claims that its air purifiers are higher than different HEPA-labeled air purifiers as a result of these purifiers go away behind pollution.
- Discontinue its COVID-19 claims.
- Modify the “Clear Air 100%” declare by including a transparent and conspicuous disclosure explaining the premise of the declare.
Every of those filters is marketed as being a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter. HEPA filters are a kind of pleated mechanical air filter that may take away at the very least 99.97% of mud, pollen, mildew, micro organism, and any airborne particles with a measurement of 0.3 microns. HEPA filters can enhance the air high quality in a room over time and are sometimes considered because the gold customary in consumer-facing filtration merchandise, reminiscent of air purifiers and vacuum cleaners.
HEPA Requirements Claims
In help of Shark’s claims that its air purifiers meet and even exceed HEPA requirements, the advertiser relied on testing carried out on the primary batch of air filters from its manufacturing line (First Run Filters).
NAD thought of whether or not the merchandise being examined are consultant of what shoppers should buy available on the market and concluded that Shark’s testing of the First Run Filters was related for the Air Air purifier 4. Additional, NAD decided that the advertiser’s QC testing was dependable and was adequate to supply an inexpensive foundation that its air filters, at the very least as of the time they left the manufacturing line abroad, met HEPA requirements.
Nonetheless, NAD concluded that, based mostly on the challenger’s rebuttal testing of off-the-shelf filters for the Air Air purifier 6, Shark’s manufacturing line testing was inadequate to help its HEPA claims for such filters.
Comparative HEPA Declare
NAD assessed the messages moderately conveyed by Shark’s declare that its filters are “True HEPA” whereas different “HEPA-labeled air purifiers can emit as much as 10x extra particles again into the air” and “can go away behind smoke, carbon mud, virus carriers, and mildew.” These claims are made alongside photos of Shark’s air air purifier and what seems to be an unbranded air air purifier. A small disclosure beneath the unbranded air purifier states “Based mostly on IEST-RP-CC007.3. 01-02 microns vs. a number one HEPA labeled air air purifier.”
NAD decided that Shark’s comparability of its “True” HEPA purifiers to different purifiers, with out figuring out a particular air purifier, straight pits Shark’s product in opposition to all “HEPA-Labeled Air Purifiers.” Though the disclosure does state that the “10X extra particles” declare was based mostly on a take a look at in opposition to “a number one” air purifier, the disclosure is tied solely to the quantified 10X claims. NAD discovered that at the very least one message moderately conveyed by the promoting is that Shark’s air purifier is a “True HEPA” filter and different HEPA-labeled filters could also be inferior.
As a result of Shark didn’t present any help for the message that its purifiers are superior to 85% of the market or that 85% of rivals out there, together with Dyson, emit dangerous particulates however their HEPA-labeling, NAD really useful that the declare be discontinued.
NAD famous that nothing in its resolution prevents Shark from educating shoppers that some HEPA-labeled air purifiers might fall wanting HEPA requirements in a non-comparative context.
NAD decided that Shark’s declare “CAPTURES airborne droplets that may carry micro organism & viruses, reminiscent of CORONAVIRUS” moderately communicates a number of messages, together with that Shark’s air air purifier:
- Captures (however doesn’t kill) the coronavirus;
- Will forestall shoppers from getting sick from the virus, both partially or fully; and
- Offers adequate safety from turning into contaminated with COVID-19 that different protections aren’t obligatory.
NAD famous that CDC steering makes clear that options like HEPA air filters or cleaners are solely a part of a multi-layered strategy to mitigate and cut back the chance of publicity to COVID-19 and is meant to be used with quite a few different precautionary practices. As a result of none of that context is current in Shark’s promoting, NAD really useful that Shark discontinue its COVID-19 claims.
NAD famous that nothing in its resolution prevents Shark from claiming that air filters can be utilized as a part of a number of mitigation methods to cut back the unfold of COVID-19 and decrease the chance of publicity.
Clear Air 100% Declare
Shark advertises that its air purifiers provide “Clear Air 100%” by prominently displaying photos of its air purifier, which has a show often called Clear Sense IQ, with the numbers “100%” below the phrases “CLEAN AIR.”
NAD famous that none of Shark’s commercials that comprise the “Clear Air 100%” declare present any rationalization of what’s meant by 100%.
A declare of 100% cleanliness is a strong declare, and within the absence of context that clearly conveys the premise of the declare, NAD discovered that buyers might moderately take away a literal message—that the air surrounding the air purifier is 100% clear of any pollution. Due to this fact, NAD really useful that Shark modify the declare by including a transparent and conspicuous disclosure explaining the premise of the 100% declare.
Lastly, through the continuing Shark voluntarily agreed to completely discontinue the declare that its filters “seize 99.97% of . . . odors.” Due to this fact, NAD didn’t overview this declare on the deserves.
In its advertiser assertion, Shark acknowledged that it “will enchantment NAD’s resolution.” The advertiser acknowledged that whereas “it’s happy that NAD decided that Shark’s proof . . .demonstrated that its filters meet the HEPA customary after they left the manufacturing line” and that “Shark supplied an inexpensive foundation for its HEPA claims for the Shark Air Air purifier 4,” it “disagrees with NAD’s different findings and suggestions.”