My Kitchen Rules chef Pete Evans has been fined $25,000 for claims about an expensive “light machine” he said could treat the “Wuhan coronavirus”.
The Therapeutic Goods Administration said it had received several complains about Evans’ promotion of the USD$15,000 BioCharger device.
The Therapeutic Goods Administration issued two infringement notices totalling $25,200 for alleged breaches of the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 (the Act). The TGA received a number of complaints about the promotion of a ‘BioCharger’ device that occurred during a Facebook live stream on 9th April.
Mr Evans allegedly live streamed on his Facebook page, which has more than 1.4 million followers, claims that the device could be used in relation to “Wuhan Coronavirus” – a claim which has no apparent foundation, and which the TGA takes extremely seriously.
Any claim that references COVID-19 is a restricted representation under therapeutic goods legislation, and is of significant concern to the TGA given the heightened public concern about the pandemic. The TGA recently published a warning to advertisers and consumers about illegal advertising relating to COVID-19.
The TGA has issued the Company with an infringement notice in respect of the representation made in the live stream / video.
A second infringement notice was issued for alleged advertising breaches on his website.
The page for the BioCharger included claims such as:
“proven to restore strength, stamina, co-ordination and mental clarity”
“sharpening your mental clarity”
“recovery….from an injury, stress”
“accelerating muscle recovery and reducing stiffness in joints”.
The Australian Medical Association also levelled criticism last month.