Carlsberg falls foul of ad watchdog after taking booze to a building site

Carlsberg has been rapped by the Advertising Standards Authority after a video produced for building supplies company TradePoint's YouTube channel depicted a large crate full of beer being delivered to a building site.

The video, created by Fold7, shows former England footballer Stuart Pearce arriving at the site with a delivery driver to hand over the unmarked wooden crate to a group of surprised-looking workmen.

Upon opening the crate and discovering a pile of Carlsberg multipacks, the men cheer and celebrate with an impromptu kickabout.

On screen text, appearing twice in the ad, reads BULK, in read text, with a downwards arrow, and underneath this, BEER, in green, with an upwards arrow – in the style of a substitution message during a football match.

Charity Alcohol Concern complained to the ASA on three grounds, saying the ad was irresponsible because it encouraged excessive drinking; implied alcohol was a key component of the success of a social event; and showed a large quantity of alcohol being delivered to a building site and, therefore,  linked alcohol with the use of potentially dangerous machinery.

The watchdog accepted Carlsberg’s response that the beer shown was not only for the workers in the film, but was shared out among the agency staff, production crew and other TradePoint workers, and that there was no reference in the ad to a particular social event, and TradePoint added that no one in the ad was shown drinking.

But on the third part of the complaint, the ASA said that even though no beer was shown to be opened and drunk, the delivery did link alcohol with the building site – an unsafe and unwise location in which to consume it. It ruled that it breached the BCap Code and ordered that it not be shown again in its current form.

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