States Take Action to Limit Enviga Green Tea Beverage Weight Loss Claims

March 3, 2009

By Cassandra A. Soltis

A settlement agreement reached between numerous state attorneys general and Coke, Nestle, and Beverage Partnership Worldwide makes clear that it is not just the Federal Trade Commission that is scrutinizing weight loss claims.  The target of the attorneys general action is Enviga, a green tea beverage that is touted as having “negative calories,” meaning that calories are burned by simply drinking the product.  Marketing for Enviga also implied that users of the product will lose weight.  As part of the settlement agreement, whenever “negative calories” or similar claims are used in the marketing of either Enviga or any “similarly formulated product,” the companies must make clear that weight loss cannot be achieved absent diet and exercise.   

As support for the “proven” negative calorie claims, the companies cite to a small study on healthy individuals that lasted only three days.  The study subjects, whose ages ranged from 28-35 years old, were in the normal weight range.  Although some study participants burned additional calories by drinking 3 cans of Enviga per day, none experienced weight loss.  Furthermore, the study did not find that the calorie-burning effect could be maintained for an indefinite period. 

The companies will pay $650,000 to the states.  The Franklin Circuit Court will review the final settlement documents for approval.  For more information, see the press release from the Attorney General of Kentucky here.

Categories: Foods