Magazine article Marketing

Sugaring the Pill over Food Ads

Magazine article Marketing

Sugaring the Pill over Food Ads

Article excerpt

Sugaring the pill over food ads

There is so much about the latest bout of mudslinging between the sugar industry and the health lobby that is eminently predictable. Yet much holds hidden pointers to the future.

The anti-sugar camp's appeal to Sir Gordon Borrie, who has discovered fresh reserves of energy as director general of fair trading, to ban the big-spending generic sugar campaign is dramatic. Its chance of success is slim. But the prospect of Borrie emerging as a new force in advertising arbitration is intriguing and should be watched.

Two years ago, the EC gave him new powers to control "misleading" ads. So far, he has used the ultimate weapon of a court injunction twice.

The injunctions applied to press ads which the notoriously feeble sanction of the Advertising Standards Authority failed to ban. Borrie's own powers do not extend to commercial TV, radio or cable channels. He cannot tread on the toes of the IBA, so the TV sugar ads, at least, are safe. …

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