Nurofen maker to be fined over misleading claims

Pharmaceutical company Reckitt Benckiser must pay fines of up to $1.1 million after it was found to have misled Australian consumers through its products claiming to offer targeted pain relief.

The UK-based pharmaceutical company was taken to court by the ACCC in March over its range of Nurofen pain relief products – including for period, back and headache pain – which all contain the same active ingredient (ibuprofen lysine).

“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,” the ACCC chairman Rod Sims said, according to Sky News.

Reckitt is likely to be fined $1.1 million per breach of the law, as well as pay court costs and issue corrections in newspapers and on its websites, reports Fairfax.

The pharmaceutical firm said it did not aim to mislead consumers.

"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," a spokeswoman said in a statement.

The painkillers must be removed from the shelves within three months, but can still be sold for another nine months after that if packets bear a sticker clarifying that they are no more effective than regular painkillers.

Leave a Reply