On May 5, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) administered a warning against General Mills regarding the claim that Cheerios® Toasted Whole Grain Oat Cereal has the ability to lower cholesterol. Basically, the FDA cited General Mills for marketing Cheerios® as a cholesterol-reducing drug. I believe the FDA’s points are valid and factual, but I have to ask – Shouldn’t our agency watchdog be focusing greater attention on the operators of thousands of Web sites and

Thomas T. Kubic Thomas T. Kubic

On May 5, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) administered a warning against General Mills regarding the claim that Cheerios® Toasted Whole Grain Oat Cereal has the ability to lower cholesterol.  Basically, the FDA cited General Mills for marketing Cheerios® as a cholesterol-reducing drug.  I believe the FDA’s points are valid and factual, but I have to ask – Shouldn’t our agency watchdog be focusing greater attention on the operators of thousands of Web sites and the spammers who peddle contraband or counterfeit drugs to American consumers every day?  What are the consequences for these dangerous marketing practices? 

The Partnership for Safe Medicines (PSM) strongly suggests that the only way to curb the sale and distribution of counterfeit drugs is to introduce warnings and reprimands against dangerous online drug sellers and then to follow up and make sure they stop.  Yes, it is important for consumers to understand that eating Cheerios® is not the solution to lowering cholesterol.  But if the FDA can focus its attention on these types of skewed advertisements, then why can't more be done to safeguard Americans from potentially harmful counterfeit drugs?  The PSM wants to reiterate the only way to put a stop to illegal and dangerous drug counterfeiting, is to place punishments on those that produce and distribute them.  For more information on the dangers of counterfeit drugs, visit www.safemedicines.org