Acai Berry Weight Loss Scam Attracts Mainstream Attention. Finally!
Acai, if you haven’t heard, is another one of those trendy, exotic “super fruits” that are all the rage these days. And while acai is a great source of anthocyanins (antioxidants) and does have a high ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity) “score”— it’s being marketed by some unscrupulous folks as being a cure all for just about everything.
The greatest offenders are on the Internet, who hawk acai as THE solution for weight loss, detoxing and colon cleansing (there is, of course, no evidence it helps with weight loss, and “detoxing” is a meaningless marketing term that has already been thoroughly discredited by scientists – see here and here).
Online, it’s commonly sold via a free trial offer, which as it turns out isn’t free at all – I call it the “free trial scam” (since you’re actually added to a recurring billing program that is nearly impossible to opt out of) and have created a video to document to issue here!
This problem is so commonplace, we’ve received dozens of complaints about the deceptive billing tactics of acai retailers on our consumer feedback site, Real-Customer-Comments.com. Even the Better Business Bureau is starting to field a vastly increasing number of complaints regarding acai-based products.
Despite this, the retailers of acai-based weight loss products have continued to do business virtually unhindered, even using fake celebrity recommendations from people like Oprah and Dr. Perricone – neither of whom have anything to do with ANY of these products.
Until now. Hopefully anyway. Because the acai scam is going offline… and mainstream. A recent Canadian CTV news story sums up the issues very nicely. It contains a great quote from Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal who is leading the charge against such scams…
“There are no magical berries from the Brazilian rainforest that cure obesity — only painfully real credit card charges and empty weight loss promises. Aggressive acai berry pitches on the Internet entice countless consumers into free trials promising weight loss, energy and detoxification. These claims are based on folklore, traditional remedies and outright fabrications–unproven by real scientific evidence. In reality, consumers lose more money than weight after free trials transition into inescapable charges.”
Amen, Richard. Ain’t that the truth.
Hopefully this sparks the beginning of the end of the whole acai berry scam.