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MLA’s Australia Day lamb campaign breaks record as most complained about ad of all time

Two consumer groups have created very different videos for and against Meat & Livestock Australia’s Australia Day lamb campaign, which has now become the most complained about advert of all time.

By Thursday afternoon the Advertising Standards Bureau had received more than 500 complaints about the ad, breaking its previous record. It will consider whether the ad promotes violence against vegans next week. It beats the record held by Ashley Madison’s 2014 ‘Someone other than my wife’ effort.

One group of expat Australians in the US have seized on the Operation Boomerang concept, where SBS presenter Lee Lin Chin has pledged to bring home Australians to enjoy a lamb barbecue, creating their own online ad they have dubbed “The Boomerang Insurgency”

The video shared on Youtube said that Operation Boomerang needed “boots on the ground support” in countries where beef and pork dominated the menu.

Kim Beazley, Australia’s ambassador to the US, features in the film, helping plan the insurgency where they infiltrated a pre-NFL game tailgating party and exchanged burgers and hot dogs for lamb chops.

The campaign has divided public opinion and some vegans have taken to Youtube to voice their anger.

Anti-animal cruelty activists Aussie Farms have edited a version under the banner of “Hilarious behind the scenes clip from the new Aus Day Lamb ad”.

The clip shows Lee Lin Chin announcing “Commence Operation Boomerang” before cutting to graphic footage of lambs being slaughtered.

Warning: video contains graphic images that may be offensive to some readers

Simon Canning

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