When Chobani advertised that its “Complete” yogurt products contained up to 25 grams of protein, the makers of Dannon yogurt cried foul. Here is the commercial claim in question:
It turns out that two of the three products shown in the ad did not have 25 grams of protein per serving. They only had 15 and that distinction was not made clear.
So Dannon filed a formal complaint with the National Advertising Division (NAD) of the Better Business Bureau. Before NAD could render a decision, Chobani announced that it would stop making the 25 grams of protein claim about its 5.3 ounces yogurt cups, and make clear that the claim only applied to their 10-ounce shake product.
“Up to” claims are inherently misleading because they highlight the best case scenario and ignore the worst case. That’s why Massachusetts advertising regulations, for example, require both the lowest number and the highest number in a range to be disclosed in equal size type, such as “save 10 to 50 percent” rather than “save up to 50 percent.”