Advertisements for Fresh Horizons Special Formula Bread will have to tell the public that the fiber in the bread comes from wood, according to a consent order made public today by the Federal Trade Commission.
Even since the bread product was introduced by ITT's Continental Baking Co. in 1976 it has been in hot water with the federal government because 7.5 percent of Fresh Horizons is powdered alpha cellulose, a form of fiber refined from ash and maple trees.
The FTC has charged ITT with false, misleading and deceptive advertising because the unusual source of the bread's fiber has not been disclosed.
The order requires that, for the next two and a half years, advertisements for Fresh Horizons -- which must be called Special Formula because it contains both wood pulp and more water that a standard loaf of bread -- must say: "The source of (this/the) fiber is wood" or "Contains fiber derived from pulp of trees."
In addition, ITT is prohibited from advertising that the fiber in Fresh Horizons is the same as that in whole wheat bread, and that it has "5 times the fiber of 100 percent whole wheat bread" or as much fiber as a similar serving of 100 percent all-bran cereal.
The agreement also prohibits the company from saying that "three out of five doctors recommend 'Fresh Horizons' for its fiber alone" because the commission said ITT had no basis for the claim.