A juice bar in Australia is selling a drink, "Immune Booster", made of orange, lemon, ginger, carrot, and turmeric, while claiming that this will help people to fight against the Coronavirus.
The 'Sweet Byron Self Service Frozen Yoghurt and Juice bar' have a poster on their front counter suggesting that this drink will help its customers to combat the deadly respiratory infection. As per the manager of the juice bar, Yonit Oakley, they are not claiming that the drink is a cure for the Coronavirus caused disease. Then what are they selling?
A 'Magic' Drink?
During the initial days of the Coronavirus pandemic, many advertisements appeared on TV screens and on websites claiming that some drinks or tonic water will help people against the COVID-19. But one by one all of those products found out to be fake and nothing but a gimmick.
As the Coronavirus continues to dominate the world and people became more health-conscious in the past few months, selling such fake products became very easy. However, in the case of the Australian juice bar, Sweet Byron manager Oakley said that they never claimed that the drink will stop people from getting coronavirus. Instead "we are working on the logic if the body has a strong immune system it will be able to fight the virus better," she added.
According to her, the juice is full of vitamin C and antioxidants as it boosts the immune system. The drink was made because "I think when we feel we are doing something for ourselves it automatically reduces our stress and anxiety levels," said Oakley and clarified that "we are not saying we have found a cure for coronavirus but we are strengthening our immune systems".
The fruit juice business had to be closed for many weeks after the first lockdown in Australia. The Northern NSW Local Health District has not reported any community transmission cases since July 25, and as per Oakley, the region has come back to life. She said, "We have been very fortunate there has not been an outbreak in my area" and joked that possibly it is because of "my immune booster".
Meanwhile, Consumer advocacy group Choice is keeping an eye on misleading advertisements related to COVID-19 helpful products. Choice Consumer Advocate Jonathon Brown said, "We are actively looking out for businesses that see this as an opportunity to take advantage of people who are worried."
Lorna Jane, a popular retailer of women's activewear in Australia, faced a fine of almost $40,000 by the Therapeutic Goods Administration for promoting clothes that it claimed to provide protection against the COVID-19.
In Australia, where more than 27,600 Coronavirus cases were reported as of Thursday, November 12, the health authorities are advising the residents to follow good eating habits and to stay healthy during the pandemic. Understanding the increased ratio of con-stars around the world, the authorities also urged people to be aware of misleading advertising and claims about some food products preventing or curing the viral infection.
Charles Bangham, a professor of immunology and infectious diseases at Imperial College London told Business Insider that, "people have this idea the immune system is some kind of internal force field that can be boosted or patched up". But according to him the green juices or other 'immunity' boosters will not help people to prevent the COVID-19 and that is the fact.