Heinz ‘disappointed’ as Beanz TV ad banned again

The ad was originally banned in November 2017 for breaking nutrition guidelines, with the Advertising Standards Association deciding the edited version cannot be shown on TV either.


Heinz says it is “disappointed” that the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned its ‘Good without going on about it’ TV ad for baked beans – again.

The spot, which Heinz says was meant to be a “humorous” memory jogger about the goodness of beans, is a slightly edited version of the original which was first banned in November for breaching nutrition guidelines.

The offending ad depicts a man arriving home to his wife and child having been on a run. While they are eating baked beans, he grabs a protein shake from the fridge before talking about his new regime and the ‘three Ps’ – purpose, progress and protein.

In the edit, his exasperated wife says: “Right,” (rather than ‘same’), “we’re just having some beans”. On-screen text then states: “High in protein. High in fibre. Low in fat”. The shot then switches to a can of Heinz Beanz with the accompanying text: “Good for you, without going on about it”.

While the ad watchdog noted that the ad did not explicitly state that Heinz Beanz had greater or fewer nutritional benefits than the protein shake, it says the overall impression created by the ad was that the product contained as much protein, fibre and fat as a typical protein shake.

“We considered consumers would therefore interpret the ad as presenting Heinz Beanz as a tastier and more appetising, but nutritionally equivalent, alternative to consuming a protein shake,” the ASA explains.

“The Annex to the Regulation did not include any nutrition claims which would allow marketers to make a claim that one food had “as much” of a nutrient or nutrients as another food. We therefore noted that the claim – Heinz Beanz had the same nutritional benefits relating to protein, fibre and fat as a protein shake – was not permitted.”

However, Heinz maintains that the ad meets the advertising guidelines.

It says: “Heinz Beanz are naturally high in protein and fibre as well as being low in fat. That is not in question. Our popular TV ad, ‘Good without going on about it’, simply aimed to be a memory jogger about the goodness of beans in a humorous way which we believed fully met advertising requirements.

“Following the ASA ruling last year the ad was amended and once again Clearcast, the organisation that checks that TV ads meet all advertising codes on behalf of broadcasters, gave their full approval. Although we are disappointed with the ASA decision we have no plans to run this particular TV ad again.”