Target told to pull Camp Gallipoli products as government clamps down on use of word Anzac

target anzac hoodie

The banned hoodie

Retailer Target has been forced to pull three Anzac branded items from its Camp Gallipoli range after the government deemed them “inappropriate”.

A beanie hat, a hoodie and a foam can holder, have been pulled from shelves this week amid a clampdown from the Department for Veterans’ Affairs on use of the word Anzac on products, triggered by the public outcry over Woolworths’ ‘Fresh in our memories’ campaign.

On Tuesday evening Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Michael Ronaldson called the supermarket giant demanding it pulled the campaign because it had not been authorised to use the word Anzac, which is protected under an Act of Parliament.

Mumbrella understands that while Camp Gallipoli does have permission to use the word Anzac on its products, the government felt the prominence of the word on the hoodie and beanie, and the notion of the can holder itself, was not appropriate.

Chris Fox, CEO of Camp Gallipoli, told Mumbrella: “There were three items the minister deemed to be pushing it a bit and were not appropriate and Target was good enough to remove them all straight away.”

anzac beanie target

the banned beanie

A statement from the Department for Veterans’ Affairs said: “The Minister can approve the sale of goods bearing the word Anzac, if the use of the word is considered appropriate, and an acceptable portion of the proceeds are donated to charity.  For example, there are a number of commemorative items for sale of which a portion of sales are donated to the RSL or Legacy.”

Target is selling 26 items ranging from $8 t-shirts to $349 swags as part of fundraising efforts for the Camp Gallipoli Foundation, a not-for-profit series of camps being held around the country to mark the 100th anniversary of the Gallipoli offensive. Surplus cash generated from the events will be donated to the Legacy and RSL charities.

In the aftermath of the Woolworths furore some people accused Target, owned by retail giant Wesfarmers, of commercialising the Anzac memory.

Fox told Mumbrella that “people have an expectation to be able to buy merchandise,” explaining Target had been selected as the retail partner because it “appeals to the masses”.

He said the deal had been structured to avoid claims of commercialisation, with products given a 15 per cent mark up on costs, all of which goes to Camp Gallipoli. Products being sold had been selected as items which would be useful to people attending the camps on April 25 and 26, he added.

Woolworths' Fresh in our memories campaign

Woolworths’ Fresh in our memories campaign

Woolworths is also a partner of Camp Gallipoli, although Fox admitted the Fresh in our memories campaign, which allowed people to generate commemorative memes which prominently featured the Woolworths logo, was “not appropriate”.

Asked what he thought had led the government clampdown on use of the word Anzac on products he said: “I think the silent minority has now become the vocal minority that are affecting the majority. Social media, particularly Twitter, is an immensely powerful tool. Politicians will always baulk at public sentiment.”

He said Camp Gallipoli was an event to bring Australians together under the spirit of “mateship”, adding “We don’t think Anzac Day is a symbolism of sacrifice. That’s to a large extent simplifying what happened there.”

Although there are a number of brands supporting the event he said they would not have a presence at the camps themselves, which are expected to attract tens of thousands of attendees across the country.

anzac can holder target

The banned drink holder

A spokesman for Target said: “Given this broad level of support and the philanthropic, educational focus of the event, we felt it was the right thing to do to become a supporter of Camp Gallipoli. We acted in good faith and close consultation with Camp Gallipoli to develop the merchandise range and ensure the products were appropriate and respectful.

“All Target profits from the sale of these products will be donated to the Camp Gallipoli Foundation. We’ve been advised that a small number of Camp Gallipoli products do not meet the agreed branding guidelines, and so we have taken prompt action to remove these products from sale.”

Alex Hayes & Steve Jones


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