‘Tasmania made’ yoghurt ad ordered off air amid concerns of origin of berries in product

An ad which implied berries in a yoghurt had come from Tasmania has been ordered off air by the Ad Standards Board because of the recent outbreak of Hepatitis A linked to imported berries.

The TV ad for Tamar Valley yoghurt (below) describes the yoghurt as the “little tub of Tassie” saying the product was made in the Tasmania, which drew a complaint demanding the company “Tell us which and what ingredients are local, probably most of the time the most minute ingredient such as a drop of water is the local ingredient”.

Fonterra Brands, the company that produces the yoghurt, defended the ad to the ASB arguing the concerns were “misplaced”.

“The statement that Tamar Valley yoghurt is made in the Tamar Valley is substantiated because: (a) the Fonterra Group of Companies manufactures Tamar Valley yoghurt at Tamar Valley Dairy; and (b) the manufacturing site for the Tamar Valley Diary is physically located beside the Tamar Valley river,” the company told the board.

“The statement regarding the origin of the milk used to make the yoghurt is also substantiated,” it added, “because…, the fresh milk used to create the yoghurt is sourced from dairy farms located in Tasmania who supply milk to the Tamar Valley production site.”

Fonterra Brands highlighted the ad made no “further statements as to the origin of any other essential ingredients” in the yoghurt.

However in its ruling, the board noted the advertiser had “remained silent” on the origin of the berries in the product in its response, concluding while the ad did not specify the origin of the berries, the overall impression was “strongly suggestive that all the ingredients are local to Tasmania”, and due to recent health scares around imported berries ruled the suggestion the ingredients are from Tasmania is misleading and deceptive.

The complaint was upheld.

Fonterra has said the ad has not been in broadcast since March 29 and will not air again.

Miranda Ward


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