Everyone loves Coke, or at least a ginormous number of people do. That, however, does not exempt the company from being reprimanded for less than honest ads, at least in the eyes of the advertising watchdogs in Australia. Last year, the soda giant ran an advertising campaign dubbed Motherhood & Myth-Busting. The main idea of the campaign was to promote Coca-cola as being safe for children. The claims include the ideas that Coke will not make children fat, and that it would not cause one’s teeth to rot – common concerns for children. The company even got popular Australian actress Kerry Armstrong to be its spokesperson.
This did not sit well with the consumer watchdogs, however, and the main governing body has commanded Coke to correct its advertisement. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, which is tasked with watching over cases like these, has declared that Coke should do something about it claims. According to Chairman Graeme Samuel, “Coke’s messages were totally unacceptable, creating an impression which is likely to mislead that Coca-Cola cannot contribute to weight gain, obesity and tooth decay.” He went on to say that “They also had the potential to mislead parents about the potential consequences of consuming Coca-Cola.”
While the Commission does have a point, I dare ask this question: What kind of parent will totally believe that drinking soda all the time is good for his or her child? Interestingly enough, Coke has agreed to publish corrective statements regarding their campaign. I guess there is no excuse for any parent to rely on Coke as his or her child’s refreshment of choice!