Nurofen admits they’ve been duping us all with misleading products

Nurofen is one of the most trusted brands in pharmaceutical goods, yet today’s news suggests they’ve been anything but trustworthy. This

Nurofen is one of the most trusted brands in pharmaceutical goods, yet today’s news suggests they’ve been anything but trustworthy.

This mess all started back in March when the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) launched action against the drug’s maker, Reckitt Benckiser, alleging that it was misleading consumers by selling a range of pain relief products targeted at specific ailments.

If you’ve ever purchased Nurofen for targeted relief for back pain or migraines, you have been duped – these products are identical to the flagship Nurofen product, just with different packaging, and twice the price. They all contained the same ingredient – ibuprofen lysine 342mg.

The Federal Court has found Nurofen were guilty of making these misleading claims.

“Price sampling conducted by the ACCC before the proceedings were commenced indicated that the Nurofen specific pain products were being sold at retail prices almost double that of Nurofen’s standard ibuprofen products and the general pain relief products of its competitors,” ACCC chairman Rod Sims said in a statement.

“The ACCC took these proceedings because it was concerned that consumers may have purchased these products in the belief that they specifically treated a certain type of pain, based on the representations on the packaging, when this was not the case”.

Reckitt Benckiser has admitted that it engaged in the misleading conduct in contravention of the Australian Consumer Law and consented to the orders made by the Federal Court.

However, the company still denies attempting to deceive customers with its product packaging and other marketing.

“The Nurofen specific-pain range was launched with an intention to help consumers navigate their pain relief options, particularly within the grocery environment where there is no healthcare professional to assist decision making,” said Nurofen spokesperson Montse Pena in a statement.

“Nurofen did not set out to mislead consumers. Nurofen has cooperated with the ACCC in relation to these proceedings and will fully comply with the court order made today.”

So it’s goodbye to Nurofen specific pain products – they’ll be removed from retail sale within three months, and the company has to post corrective notices in newspapers and on its website.

Reckitt Benckiser will also have to implement a consumer protection compliance program, pay the ACCC’s legal costs and potentially pay penalties which are to be determined by the court at a later date, reports the ABC.

Tell us, do you think the Federal Court’s recommendations are enough? Should customers get compensation for the misleading products?

  1. Thank heavens they caught them out, it makes me wonder how many things that we are being duped on that have not been caught out yet. This is just preying on the sick

  2. I remember reading the ingredients and they were the same on all packets. So I’m surprised it took so long for them to get busted

  3. My daughter-in-aw pointed this out to me two years ago how come it has taken consumer protection (who ever they are)so long to catch up? What else are the public being misled on!!

  4. They should be made to reimburse anyone who bought their products, how many Australian’s have they conned?

  5. There must be some thing different about them though as the migraine ones are the only thing that works instantly on a migraine for me…. The ordinary ones just don’t work

    • It is the placebo effect, you think it is it works, I get migraines too but have never taken them, I stick to Pandol

    • Was going to explain the placebo effect too. Homebrand paracetamol tabs often have the same ingredients as branded items…. Check the labelled ingredients. You could save $$

  6. Brian Lee  

    Panadol is much the same too – all their differently titled packs, supposed to do different jobs, contain 500mg of paracetamol. Not only that but you can buy generic products, containing exactly the same amount of paracetamol, for about a third of the price.

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