An American laboratory has recently found that some store-branded aloe gel being sold across many national retailers, including Wal-Mart, contains no evidence of aloe vera at all despite them listing aloe vera as either the number one or number two ingredient after water.
Aloe vera has been used for its healing properties throughout history and is still just as popular amongst modern-day consumers. However, it seems that some retailers are exploiting the public’s desire for aloe by supplying them with fake goods. The shocking discovery was made by Bloomberg News who hired a lab to carry out aloe testing on a selection of products. The four gels that underwent this testing were Wal-Mart’s ‘Equate Aloe After Sun Gel with pure aloe vera’, Target’s ‘Up & Up Aloe Vera Gel with pure aloe vera’, CVS’ ‘Aftersun Aloe Vera Moisturizing Gel’ and Walgreen’s ‘Alcohol Free Aloe Vera Body Gel’. Samples of these products were tested for aloe’s three chemical markers – acemannan, malic acid and glucose – but all were found to be absent from each product except for Walgreen’s gel, which contained just one of these markers (malic acid). In the other three samples, a cheaper food additive called maltodextrin was found which is sometimes used to imitate aloe. Astonishingly, none of the samples contained lactic acid which is also a key component used to indicate the presence of degraded aloe vera. The lack of acemannan in all four of the tested products is of particular concern, since it is this component that gives aloe vera its beneficial properties according to Jane Wilson, Executive Director of the International Aloe Science Council. Despite these findings, all four of the retailers in question either declined to comment or denied any wrongdoing. Several law firms have since filed lawsuits against the retailers after further testing failed to find aloe in the company’s private-label products. They’re seeking class-action status and restitution for all the customers who were misled.
The International Aloe Science Council (IASC) represents the aloe industry and was formed in the 1980s to offer an independent certification programme to ensure both the quantity and quality of aloe vera in consumer products. IASC has a strong code of ethics and carries out a strict inspection and testing programme on aloe-based products to ensure the industry is running ethically; therefore consumers should always look for aloe products certified by IASC when making a purchase. We are proud to announce that Forever’s Aloe Vera Gel exceeded IASC’s high standards and the majority of Forever’s products have also been awarded with its Seal of Approval.
Forever is extremely proud of its products and the company is passionate about aloe vera; we even patented aloe’s stabilisation process so that it can remain pure and be used as the foundation ingredient across our product range. We are the world’s largest grower, manufacturer and distributor of aloe vera products and we control everything from the fields to the factory. We’re involved in research and development, as well as the packing, shipping and distribution phases. It takes three years for a plant to mature, and once ready, the leaf is hand-picked, transported, washed and filleted. The raw materials can vary based on the method of harvest, the climate, season and storage conditions. Therefore, to minimise these variations and to ensure the quality of our aloe, all the leaves are processed and packed for shipping to our manufacturing facilities within hours of harvest. Minutes after filleting, the raw gel is stabilised through a patented process which preserves the nutritional compounds and seals in its natural potency. Forever holds a number of accreditations that relate to the quality of its products and we follow a strict testing regime on every product before it reaches the consumer. In total our manufacturing plant, Aloe Vera of America, performs over 1.5 million quality tests per year. We offer retail customers a sixty-day money-back guarantee if they are not satisfied with the product, and less than 0.5% of our product comes back to us under this money-back guarantee. Such high quality creates demand and last year we sold 1,465,309 bottles of Forever Aloe Vera Gel – now that’s incredible!