From Kook Science

Formation 1957
Dissolution 1963
Legal status Dissolved
Purpose/focus Nutritional supplement distribution franchise sales
Headquarters California
Founders J. Earl Shoaff, Rich Schnackenberg

Nutri-Bio was a California-based nutritional supplement distribution franchise company, founded in 1957 by J. Earl Shoaff and Rich Schnackenberg, former distributors with J. B. Jones's Abundavita. Distributors associated with Nutri-Bio, and who later went on to use the same direct sales and multi-level marketing techniques as the company, included the likes of William Penn Patrick (Holiday Magic), William E. Bailey (Bestline Products), and Glenn W. Turner (Koscot Interplanetary).

Along with Shoaff and Schnackenberg was Bob Cummings, a film and television actor, who was a vice-president and director of nutritional research, and would himself would later operate Bob Cummings Inc., a similar nutritional supplement concern that saw itself prosecuted in California as a pyramid scheme, "making its profits from recruiting investors rather than from product sales."[1] Another of the company's famous supporters and distributors was Billy James Hargis, founder of the Christian Crusade, who advertised the product on his radio show.

Nutri-Bio products

The vitamins and minerals sold by Nutri-Bio were produced by Los Angeles-based pharmaceutical houses. The main product, Nutri-Bio, was reported to contain alfalfa extract, kelp, chlorophyllin, montmorillonite, and lemon grass.[D] During a 1963 United States Senate hearing by the Special Committee on Aging, it was stated that the products being sold by the company by a network of an estimated "75,000 door-to-door agents" were being promoted as "adequate and effective in the prevention and treatment of heart trouble, rheumatism, impotency, senility, arthritis, premature death," and that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had consequently seized stocks of Nutri-Bio products over "false and misleading labeling claims."[2]

Press Coverage


  2. "Testimony of Hon. George P. Larrick, Commissioner, Food and Drug Administration", Hearings Before the Special Committee on Aging, United States Senate, Eighty-Eight Congress, First Session. Part 3. — Washington, D.C. January 17, 1963., Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1963, p. 316-317