Woolworths pulls ‘Fresh in our memory’ website after being accused of exploiting Anzac legacy

woolworths fresh in our memories diggersSupermarket giant Woolworths has pulled down a website called ‘Fresh in our memories’ which was the centre of its major Anzac Day marketing push after being accused of exploiting the events of Gallipoli for profit.

The name of the site was a play on the supermarket’s tagline ‘Fresh food people’, and allowed users to generate Facebook cover photos and profile pictures which feature the words ‘Fresh in our memory’ and the company’s logo.

Woolworths tonight said it “regretted” that the site caused offence and confirmed it has taken it down.

woolworths fresh in our memory meme generatorTen newsreader Sandra Sully and Fairfax columnist Peter FitzSimons are among those who have taken to social media accusing the supermarket of “making puns” out of the Anzac legacy and cashing in on Anzac Day.

Among imagery made available on the site is a Facebook profile cover photo users can download featuring a digger carrying a dead comrade through the battlefield emblazoned with the words “Lest we forget” and featuring the Woolworths logo and a link to the website.

Woolworths is also a principal sponsor of the Camp Gallipoli events taking place across the country to mark Anzac Day.

In March the supermarket added experiential agency Carrspace to its roster to handle its activation around the event and to create the Fresh in our memories website. Overnight the agency has pulled the press release it circulated on the win from its website and deleted its Twitter account.

The supermarket said in a statement tonight: “The Fresh in Our Memories website has been taken down this evening.  The site was developed to give our staff and customers a place to put their stories to mark the Centenary of ANZAC.

“We regret that our branding on the picture generator has caused offence, this was clearly never our intention.  Like many heritage Australian companies, we were marking our respect for ANZAC and our veterans.

“We continue to be proud supporters of the RSL and Camp Gallipoli in this important year and look forward to working with them into the future.”

In an earlier statement to Buzzfeed Woolworths had defended the ploy stating: “As an Australian company since our creation more than 90 years ago, we are very happy to support our diggers.

“Like all Australians, we pay our respects to service people past and present and it’s appropriate that to do that with a small logo on the site.”

Other brands are also being called out for Anzac-based marketing on a Tumblr called Poppies for Profit including sports teams, News Corp, and Target.

Alex Hayes

Some of the social media feedback:

Some users have also started adding inappropriate images of their own to the mem generator, including one who used a picture of Woolworths chief marketing officer Tony Philips:

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