ASCI asks HUL to prove the immunity boost claim made by Lifebuoy


The Advertising Standard Council of India (ASCI) has presented FMCG Big HUL to the Commission demanding the reclamation that it enhances protection for its Lifebuoy hand sanitizer. The message was sent on a Twitter microblogging site, following a complaint received by ASCI.

“How to boost protection with the hand sanitizer,” said one question. “Immunity boosting Hand Sanitizer,” the Lifebuoy hand sanitizer says on its packings. HUL has also claimed it will not only destroy germs and viruses but also increases the inherent protection of the skin, through immune improving hand sanitizer. “Based on sound empirical facts, our drug structure and statements,” said a group spokesperson on an e-mail in order to clarify the allegations.

“ASCI itself filed a complaint against Suo moto in 2016 and supported our claims. This assertion was focused on work with top world scholars and has also been reported in leading science papers, and we obtained and replied to contact from ASCI,” said the spokesperson. ASCI said that the communication centered around “Immunity” benefits has increased considerably in the present pandemic situation. We look into that and figure out whether the statements are sufficiently substantiated or deceived by confusion and/or interference. ASCI as a policy does not want to focus on some single message or company as well, says Shweta Purandare, General Secretary, ASCI. ‘People may have misleading and confusing consumer advertising. HUL said that Lifebuoy is probably the only hand sanitizer to increase the world’s immunity and has been claiming since 2016. Their claim has been on-pack. In the background of the new Coronavirus pandemic, however, the demands of customers for immunity boosters have skyrocketed, contributing to a resurgence of the debate in the field of these drugs by many FMCG firms.

In the past few months, leading consumer goods companies have introduced in three dozen health and hygiene brands and derivatives to focus on the improved market interest and appetite for such items because of the Covid-19 scare. Nielsen said in March, the segment for hand washes increased 60%, compared with 7% in the previous three months; floor cleansing doubled to 24% while hand sanitizers increased 340%, compared to 24% in December and February. In March, handwashing increased to 340%.


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