Nigel Griffiths, the Government’s consumer affairs minister, this
week called for an end to rules restricting TV advertising of sanpro
products to the post-9pm watershed.
Griffiths called the curbs ’absurd’ and declared he was sympathetic to
manufacturers pressing for their removal.
He told the annual lunch of the Incorporated Society of British
Advertisers: ’I have always thought sanpro advertising was unnecessarily
restrictive.’ And he ridiculed the unreality of commercials using a blue
liquid to illustrate the products’ absorbability.
If sanpro ads were aired earlier in the evening, parents would be able
to answer their children’s questions about feminine hygiene, he
That was much healthier, he suggested, than allowing children to remain
ignorant of what was what was happening to their bodies.
Meanwhile, Griffiths promised a consultation period before the
Government pressed ahead with a tobacco ad ban and pledged to ensure
that Formula One motor racing was not driven out of Britain when tobacco
sponsorship money was withdrawn.
But he affirmed the Government’s commitment to a ban and its
determination to impose a ’tight timetable’ for ending tobacco
Griffiths also promised action to curb alcopops sales in the absence of
manufacturers’ initiatives. ’If a minister had taken an interest before,
perhaps we would not have got into this mess,’ he said.
Griffiths insisted the answer was better enforcement of the rules drawn
up by the Portman group, a trade body that promotes sensible
But he warned: ’If we have to react, we will.’