Mona Vie Scam Scrutinized as...





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Published on Jul 5, 2009


mona vie scam

Mona Vie Litigation
On July 11, 2007, Monarch Health Sciences, the company that originally launched Mona Vie, filed a lawsuit with the Utah district court against rival açaí juice manufacturer Amazon Thunder, alleging that owner/founder Todd Reum had made harmful, false, and defamatory statements" about MonaVie which "purportedly injured Monarchs reputation. The suit sought $75,000 in damages. On November 15, 2007, the Utah district court ruled to dismiss the case against Reum.

On March 17, 2008 Mona Vie preemptively filed a lawsuit with the Utah district court asking for a ruling as to whether Quixtar Inc. and Amway Corp. had been over-reaching the boundaries of its non-compete agreements and address whether or not such agreements are enforceable for independent distributors. On March 18, 2008, Quixtar North America filed a multi-count federal court complaint against the Mona Vie company and 16 of its distributors (John Brigham Hart, Lita Hart, Jason Lyons, Carrie Lyons, Lou Niles, Farid Zarif, and 10 anonymous defendants) for unfair competition. The complaint alleged that Mona Vie competed unfairly by making false claims about its products. According to a company press release, Mona Vie filed to dismiss the Amway/Quixtar lawsuit on April 15, 2008. On November 12, 2008, Mona Vie et al. filed a lawsuit in the Colorado District Court against Quixtar

On May 5, 2008, the Mona Vie company, its board of directors, and several of its senior distributors were sued by Imagenetix, Inc. for $2.75 billion over trademark infringement arising from false claims that Mona vie Active juice contained the ingredient Celadrin. The case was settled out of court and the lawsuit was dropped on May 20, 2008.

Mona Vie Criticism
Critics of Mona Vie include physician Andrew Weil and nutritionist Jonny Bowden, who claim that Mona Vies nutritional and health benefits are not proven and that the product is exorbitantly priced relative to more cost-effective conventional antioxidant-rich foods, such as blueberries, raspberries, and pomegranates. Weil states that organic anti-oxidant rich foods such as blueberries are a more cost-effective alternative to Mona vie, yet Weil does not provide any specific costs for quantities of these foods that would provide a comparable level of antioxidant intake. Bowden does not provide any specific information regarding Mona vie's antioxidant capacity, but infers that a bottle "at $37 a pop" is more expensive than conventional fruits. Bowden does not mention that a bottle of Mona vie contains thirteen 2 ounce servings, nor does he equate that to any quantity of whole fruits. According to Mens Journal, a nutritional analysis conducted by ChromaDex, a contract-testing laboratory, showed that Mona Vie Active juice tested extremely low in anthocyanins and phenolics and that even apple juice (which also tested poorly) has more phenolics. The report also noted that MonaVies vitamin C level was 5 times lower than that of Welchs Grape Juice.

Bowden, Newsweek correspondent Tony Dokoupil, and Palm Beach Post reporter Carolyn Susman commented on the use of misleading promotional testimonials by MonaVie distributors in which the product was said to prevent and treat a variety of medical conditions. Dokoupil noted that the FDA warned Mona Vie about medicinal claims on its Web site in reference to the Food and Drug Administration's action against MonaVie distributor Kevin Vokes in July 2007. According to the FDA's warning notice, Vokes had promoted Mona Vie as a drug in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act [21 U.S.C. § 321(g)(1)] by claiming that it was effective for treating inflammation, high cholesterol, and muscle and joint pain. In a 2008 article in Forbes magazine, reporters Emily Lambert and Klaus Kneale described Mona Vie as a pyramid scheme and noted that a Mona Vie video testimonial by distributor Louis Lou B. Niles implied that the product could cure cancer. In a Bloomberg News interview in 2009, Mona vie executive vice-president and cofounder Randy Larsen stated that "the company is struggling with independent distributors who promote the juice as a miracle drug."

Type Private
Mona Vie Founded 2005
Headquarters Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
Area served North America, Australia, Brazil, New Zealand, Singapore, Japan, Israel
Key people Dallin Larsen, Henry Marsh, Dell Brown, Randy Larsen, Amy Cowley, Mark Iscaro
Industry Nutrition
Mona Vie Products Açai berry juice: MonaVie Original Blend, MonaVie Kosher Blend, MonaVie Active Blend, Mona Vie Pulse Blend, MonaVie Gel Packs, MonaVie Active Gel Packs


mona vie scam scrutinized

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