NEWS: BMP airs first beef ads since BSE row

The Meat and Livestock Commission is finally to tackle the beef crisis head on with a hard-hitting TV, press and poster campaign by BMP DDB.

The Meat and Livestock Commission is finally to tackle the beef crisis

head on with a hard-hitting TV, press and poster campaign by BMP DDB.



A quality standard for minced beef, launched on Thursday, will be backed

by a national press campaign next week. TV and poster work will break in

July.



The TV ads, lauding the virtues of British mince, were originally due to

run in March. However, two days before the campaign was set to break,

Stephen Dorrell, the Health Minister, admitted to Parliament that there

could be a connection between CJD, BSE and British beef.



The admission threw the beef industry into crisis, and the campaign was

pulled. But, as confidence in British beef is gradually being restored,

the MLC felt that the time was right to confront the image problem

facing minced beef.



The MLC has poured extra funds into the media budget and into

supplementary press and poster executions to create a pounds 2.5 million

campaign.



Chris Lamb, the consumer marketing manager of the MLC, said: ‘We could

have taken the soft route and addressed the problem through warm

statements about beef, and hoped the message filtered down to mince. But

we have decided to go straight to the problem.’



The quality stamp, in the shape of a rosette, is designed to reassure

customers that all meat carrying the mark is offal free, and comes from

regular cuts of prime cattle under 30 months old.



First on TV will be a 20-second spot explaining the new stamp, and then

the full 50-second ad, written and art directed by John Webster, the BMP

executive creative director, will follow.



It features a teenage boy having a bad day. He wakes up to find a spot

on the end of his nose, he can’t decide how to wear his hair, or whether

his shirt should be in or out. At school, he forgets his trunks, so

can’t go swimming, and in a physics lesson the mixture in his test-tube

turns blue when his classmates’ are yellow.



When he gets home his mum saves the day by cooking his favourite meal,

cottage pie. However, there’s another disappointment in store as his

father comes down the stairs wearing his shirt hanging out, causing the

boy to regret his sartorial decision.