Cadbury Fairtrade ad accused of racial sterotyping

A Cadbury advertisement to promote its recent move to Fairtrade chocolate has been accused of presenting racial sterotypes.

The Advertising Standards Authority has received 15 complaints about the spot, which is set in Ghana and features farmers that grow the cocoa pods Cadbury uses in its chocolate. The watchdog has not yet decided whether to investigate the complaints.

Complainants accused the spot of being demeaning and of perpetuating stereotypes of African people.

A spokeswoman for Cadbury says it rejects the allegations, adding the campaign has been “widely welcomed” by Ghanaians including community leaders both in Ghana and in the UK.

“Our heritage, reputation and strong values are incredibly important to us.  We have gone to considerable lengths to ensure that this is a joyous and uplifting portrayal of Ghanaian culture and something which Ghanaians can feel proud of, she adds.

The ad features a giant tribal head raining cocoa pods as it passes through a Ghanaian village.

The soundtrack to the spot, Zingolo, was performed by Ghanaian music star Tinny and released as a single with all profits going to CARE International charities to fund education in the region.

The complaints come two years after Cadbury was forced to pull an ad for its Trident gum brand after the ASA concluded the campaign showed “hamful” racial sterotypes.

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