BCAP reveals new rules for radio ads

Food and drink manufacturers have been banned from using celebrity voice-overs and licensed characters in radio ads aimed at primary school or pre-school kids. The rules come into effect on September 17.

The new rules, which have been announced by the Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practice (BCAP) today (September 17), follow the introduction of a ban on advertising products that are high in fat, salt or sugar around kids programming and on non-broadcast advertising.

Under the new rules, manufacturers cannot encourage or condone excessive consumption of any food, poor nutritional habits or an unhealthy lifestyle. They cannot suggest that confectionery and snack food products may be substituted for balanced meals or encourage children to eat a product to take advantage of an offer. Manufacturers are also banned from making health and nutrition claims in adverts aimed at primary or pre-school children.

BCAP chairman Andrew Brown describes the rules as a “significant milestone”. He adds: “The advertising industry has responded to Government and public concern about rising levels of childhood obesity and demonstrated its commitment to playing its part in tackling the problems through the formulation of stringent advertising rules.

The BCAP says advertising for fresh fruit and vegetables will be exempt from the new rules, which will be implemented by the Advertising Standards Authority.

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