ASA forces Libby’s Organic juice to drop ‘natural’ claim

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has clamped down on misleading product labelling by ruling that Libby’s Organic juice drink cannot be described as “natural” in ads.

Following an inquiry, manufacturer Gerber Foods Soft Drinks was forced to admit the product is pasteurised, and the ASA ruled that the ads which describe it as “just like nature intended” were misleading.

The ruling follows public complaints about the ad, created in house, which appeared in Sainsbury’s Magazine.

Although the fruit used to make the drink is organic, the fruit juice is concentrated and has water added to it. The manufacturer admitted this process may change the taste of the fruit juice but said the “natural” claim related to the organic farming process.

But the ASA said “consumers’ perception of the product would be different” if they were aware of the way the drink was made.

Last year the Food Standards Agency launched a review of product descriptions such as “natural” and “pure” to stamp out the use of meaningless product descriptions (MW August 2, 2001). Under current legislation a product which is concentrated can be described as pure.

A poster for independent London radio station Fusion 107.3FM has been branded “sexist” by the ASA because it shows a woman’s breasts with radio dials instead of nipples. Fusion will not repeat the campaign.

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