ASA slams Vegetarian Society ad campaign

By JOHN TYLEE, campaignlive.co.uk, Friday, 12 December 1997 12:00AM

Meat producers have scored an almost total victory over vegetarians, who have been carpeted for alleged scaremonger tactics in advertising that links meat eating to cancer.

Meat producers have scored an almost total victory over

vegetarians, who have been carpeted for alleged scaremonger tactics in

advertising that links meat eating to cancer.



The Advertising Standards Authority has warned the Vegetarian Society

about the accuracy of its claims after a national press campaign was

condemned for causing needless distress by exaggerating the connection

between red meat and the disease.



The Meat and Livestock Commission, the National Farmers’ Union and the

Danish Bacon and Meat Council were among 64 objectors to the campaign,

through OgilvyOne Worldwide, which features photographs of operation

scars labelled ’colon cancer’, ’stomach cancer’, ’prostate cancer’ and

’breast cancer’ with the headline: ’It’s much easier to cut out

meat.’



The ads cite British Medical Journal estimates that vegetarians had up

to 40 per cent less risk of becoming cancer victims and claim: ’You

might decide that meat, like cancer, is best avoided.’



The ASA was critical of the society for making links that were neither

convincing nor universally accepted, misrepresenting Government

recommendations, and ignoring advice not to run two of the ads without

making changes.



Meanwhile, the ASA has warned Bass to take greater care with future

advertising after the appearance of a poster for the alcopop, Hooper’s

Hooch Hoola, which was criticised for linking drinking with water sports

and pitching its appeal to consumers under the age of 18.



The charity, Hope UK, was among those who objected to the Euro RSCG Wnek

Gosper poster headlined, ’Hooch. Now being surfed’, which features a man

wearing a floral cap and a wig on a beach with a surfer, holding a

bottle of Hoola, superimposed on the quiff in his hair.



But the ASA has cleared Bean Andrews Norways Cramphorn of producing a

pornographic poster for the Body Shop with the words, ’Don’t rage,

relax’, painted on to the side of a naked woman whose breasts are

visible. Twenty-one people complained to the authority about the ad.



This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk

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