Monsanto ad to face ASA investigation

Monsanto’s advertising campaign, promoting the safety of genetically modified food, has sparked 14 complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority from environmental pressure groups and the public.

The ASA has this week decided to investigate the complaints, which all claim the ad is misleading.

Representatives of the Soil Association, the Green Party and Gene Watch have complained about the ads, devised by Bartle Bogle Hegarty, which are running for three months.

The campaign aims to reassure consumers about the safety and the benefits of genetically-modified foods, and invites readers to contact opposing organisations for an alternative opinion.

Soil Association director Patrick Holden says: “We find this advertisement is incorrect, misleading and dishonest and represents a lack of corporate responsibility towards both the environment and public health. We recommend it should be withdrawn as soon as possible.”

Only one retailer, frozen food chain Iceland, has pledged that its own-label products will contain soya which has been sourced from non-GM food crops.

The chain is named in the Monsanto ads as an organisation which will provide an alternative view to those of the biotechnology company.

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