Marc Ching is founder of the Animal Hope & Wellness Foundation, which focuses on rescuing abused dogs and cats. He runs the PetStaurant, a purveyor of natural healing products for critters, with stores in Sherman Oaks and West Los Angeles.
And according to the Federal Trade Commission, Ching, 55, has been illegally selling an herbal supplement he claimed could treat COVID-19.
Not just that. He was accused by the FTC of making unsubstantiated claims that several other products sold by his Sherman Oaks supplements company, Whole Leaf Organics, can treat cancer.
These latter products feature CBD, or cannabidiol, a compound in marijuana that doesn’t get you high but is said to have unproven health benefits.
Ching agreed this week to a preliminary order from the FTC barring him from claiming any product sold by his company “treats, prevents or reduces the risk of COVID-19; or treats cancer; or cures, mitigates or treats any disease.”
Mitch Katz, an FTC spokesman, told me the settlement represents the agency’s “first formal law enforcement action” involving a purported COVID-19 treatment.
However, he noted that “more than 30 warning letters” have been sent to companies selling similarly questionable remedies.
“There’s no proof that any product will prevent or treat COVID-19 or that any CBD product will treat cancer,” said Andrew Smith, who heads the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.
Published: April 30, 2020
Founder & Interim Editor of L.A. Cannabis News