Saturday, August 06, 2016

Open Email To Whole Foods Market / Caveat Emptor: Read The Fine Print!

Hello Whole Foods Market:

I am a loyal Whole Foods Market customer in San Francisco, California.

I'm contacting you about "Product Standards" because I found something disturbing buried in the fine print on the label of a sample of a dietary supplement product that you carry in (at least some of) your stores:

Product: Irwin Naturals "Brain Awake" Liquid Soft Gels.

On the tri-fold label, at the bottom of the "Supplement Facts", is the following:

"WARNING (State Of California Prop 65) This product contains a chemical known to the State of California to cause birth defects or other reproductive harm."

Now, as I received this sample from a Whole Foods Market Store in California and as Whole Foods Market proudly makes the claim of: "America's Healthiest Grocery Store", I found this item particularly disturbing.

Not to mention the fact that I have excellent eyesight and don't require/wear glasses or contacts.  Still, there's a variety of small-sized fonts on the label, but this CA Prop 65 Warning is in the smallest one of them all.  Therefore, even I couldn't have read that line without the use of a magnifying glass.

Considering how many people wear glasses, I'm quite sure the vast majority of Whole Foods Market customers who may have picked up the same Brain Awake sample as I did would be unable to read the fine print - including this warning - and would, undoubtedly, ingest the gel caps because they were from Whole Foods Market and, well, WFM wouldn't offer anything that might be harmful to a woman, her unborn child or her reproductive system, would they?

Fortunately, I've paid close attention to health/diet/product/supplement news and I've done enough research so that I know better than to trust the FDA's approval or any product manufacturer's well-thought out label at face value.  Health-conscious individuals must be their own best advocates, read the labels of everything and know what ingredients are as well as their safety/efficacy (or lack thereof).

There's a serious problem, though,. when the print on a label is so tiny as to require the use of a magnifying glass to read it.

And, there's an enormous problem when a grocery store that claims to be "America's Healthiest" is offering products with a CA Prop 65 Warning buried in the tiny print of that label which warns of "... birth defects and other reproductive harm"... but no one can be - conceivably - expected to be able to read it.

Do you know if there are other products on your shelves with the same (or similar) warning(s)?  How many of them are in such tiny-sized letters as to be, virtually, illegible?  If there are, how many are there?  Why would WFM agree to sell such products, especially in California?

At the very least, shouldn't WFM have a large, easy-to-read sign displayed in its Supplement Departments to inform WFM customers that some of the dietary supplement products WFM offers for purchase may contain ingredients known to the State of California to cause BIRTH DEFECTS or OTHER REPRODUCTIVE HARM?!

I see pregnant women shopping in WFM every day.  So, reading this warning on one of your products - but only with the aid of a magnifying glass - bothers me.  I sincerely hope it bothers you., too.  Are you going to do anything about this?

Please respond ASAP.  I look forward to hearing from you.  Thank you.

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