SodaStream gets sexy with Scarlett Johansson

SodaStream International has signed Hollywood actress Scarlett Johansson as its first ever global brand ambassador, heading up a new marketing campaign for the home carbonation system.

The multi-year partnership will kick-off when SodaStream premieres its first ad featuring Johansson during the Super Bowl XLVII on 2 February.

Daniel Birnbaum, CEO of SodaStream, said “Scarlett is a long-time user and genuine fan of our products, a role model for healthy body image and a champion for environmental responsibility, making her the perfect choice for our global ambassador. She truly embodies our brand values and we are honoured to have her join our team.”

“The company's commitment to a healthier body and a healthier planet is a perfect fit for me. I love that the product can be tailored to any lifestyle and palate. The partnership between me and SodaStream is a no brainer. I am beyond thrilled to share my enthusiasm for SodaStream with the world,” Johansson said.

SodaStream encourages consumers to create their own carbonated beverages at home,  offering reusable bottles and soda mixes in over 100 flavours, with less sugar and less calories than other soft drink alternatives.

 

Kekovich celebrates 10 years as Lambassador with new ad [video]

Former Australian Rules football and Australia’s official ‘Lambassador’, Sam Kekovich is celebrating the 10th anniversary of his annual Australia Day Address to the Nation.

Due to air for the first time this Sunday (12 January), the ad promotes the consumption of lamb over the Australia Day holiday period.

The ad features Kekovich taking a swipe at the last remaining Wiggle, as well as a giant baby crushing a vegan barbecue.

“You must educate the new generation about the perils of a lambless life. Teaching a tot to love lamb is the most pressing duty of every loving parent,” he said.

“Because we want these little cherubs to grow up big and strong to fight unAustralianism.

“If we don’t give less about Gonski and talk more about Chopski, our nation’s future would look much brighter … BBQ lamb on Australia Day and show them how it’s done.”

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Click here to view the 2013 ad.

 

Rekorderlig and CCA partnership kicks off

The distribution partnership between popular cider brand, Rekorderlig, and beverages giant Coca-Cola Amatil (CCA) has commenced, effective 1 January, 2014, establishing CCA as the sole importer and distributor of the brand here in Australia.

CCA, which was up until December last year restrained from selling, distributing or manufacturing beer or cider, will now be responsible for the sales, distribution, development and management of customer relationships, following on from the partnership Rekorderlig had with Melbourne-based Red Island Marketing for the past three years.

Chilli Marketing, global custodian of the Rekorderlig brand, will continue to manage marketing, sponsorships and innovation in Australia.

The brand has enjoyed significant growth since launching in Australia in 2009 and now holds a 20 percent share of the packaged cider category.

According to Christian Barton, managing director for Chilli Marketing, working with a bigger operator won’t slow this growth. “We may be with a bigger partner but nothing changes from our side. We are still committed to behaving as the nimble brand with Swedish heritage that we have always been and we are even more dedicated to supporting the trade here in Australia to grow the cider category both in volume and value. The only real difference now is that we have even more great people to tell our story,” he said.

A number of the Red Island team have moved to CCA to help transition the brand.

In August last year, CCA also struck a deal with Molson Coors, the world's seventh largest brewer, to distribute a number of its beers in the Australian market.

 

five:am recruits pro surfer Laura Enever for new brand campaign

five:am Organic Yoghurt has launched a brand campaign titled “Wake up Be Am:azing” starring Australian pro-surfer, Laura Enever.

The campaign is being complemented by a new website and an integrated marketing campaign spanning across TV and social media with the aim of inspiring people to wake up early, enjoy breakfast and seize the day.

The TV commercial was created by Melbourne based agency, SMART, and features Enever waking up at 5am and hitting the surf at Sydney’s Whale Beach before enjoying breakfast.

Sophie Speer, five:am’s marketing and sales manager said that the campaign complements the company’s core philosophy of seizing the day.

 “We really do live the philosophy behind wake up be amazing here at five:am HQ – it’s even the reason why the brand was named five:am. It’s a way of life for our founder, yogi and surfer, David Prior who wakes up every morning at 5:00am to hit the waves, practice yoga and meditate. It’s also the time our farmers milk the cows!" says Speer.

"We wanted the TVC to show the sense of clarity and calmness you get when you’re up at this hour. SMART has done a fantastic job at recreating the Wake Up, Be Amazing elements and we’re thrilled with the result.

“We’re stoked to have Laura on board as a ‘friend of five:am’. Not only is she a talent on the water and screen, Laura exudes living life to the full.”

SMART’s creative director, Ben Davis said “we’re extremely pleased with this work and think it’s a true representation of five:am as leaders in the Aussie organic yoghurt category. The end result is something pretty special.”

In addition to Enever, five:am has also enlisted some additional personalities to represent the key ‘branches’ of the brand. Actress Jess Tovey is an advocate for environment, founder of The Holistic Ingredient and health wellness practitioner Amy Crawford represents taste and nutrition, while Australian Certified Organic and the Australian Organic Dairy Farmers Co-op stand for community and Australia respectively.

The Wake up Be Am:azing campaign will kick off on 1 January, 2014. 

 

Special K partners with New Balance to launch new campaign

Following strong success in Canada, Kellogg’s Special K has partnered with global fitness brand New Balance to launch a new health and fitness promotional campaign.

The promotion will take place over the next two months and involves a back-of-pack promotion that enables eligible consumers to receive a limited edition New Balance training top that displays the message “Believe you can and you will”.

Special K senior brand manager, Kate Harris said the partnership with New Balance was a perfect fit for the brand.

 “The start of a New Year is a natural time for women to reassess their goals for the next twelve months and we wanted to support her on that journey. We believe that joining forces with New Balance is a fantastic way to make this happen” says Ms Harris.

The promotion will be supported by an integrated advertising campaign across TV, online and digital mediums.

 

Coles partners with Perfection Fresh to launch healthy eating campaign

Supermarket giant Coles has launched a new healthy eating campaign in conjunction with one of Australia’s best known marketers for fresh fruit and vegetables, Perfection Fresh.  

The campaign which is inclusive of the new Hatters Vegetables brand is designed to encourage the consumption of fresh fruit and vegetables through the use of an interactive website and the use of a quirky cartoon vegetable expert named Livingstone R. Rabbit, who educates on the importance of seasonal vegetables and offers tasty recipes.

The move has been welcomed by the Produce Marketing Association Australia and New Zealand, with Michael Worthington, CEO of PMA Australia-New Zealand stating that the campaign will undoubtedly encourage the public to consume more fresh produce.

 “Now more than ever the fresh produce industry needs to apply clever marketing and promotional measures to encourage Australian consumers to eat their recommended daily intake of fresh fruits and vegetables,” said Worthington.

“With increased touch points available to consumers across a range of mediums, innovation in how retailers communicate with shoppers is a welcome and positive move that can only mean good things for the industry.”

Worthing says that the campaign has the capacity to change of eating habits of the public and pave the way for a healthier community.

“It’s fantastic to see two PMA A-NZ members, Coles and Perfection Fresh, involved in a pioneering move that will pave the way for growers, distributers and retailers in the future,” said Worthington.

 

NZ’s Anathoth jam undergoes rebrand

New Zealand jam manufacturer, Anathoth, has refreshed its look and rebranded to Anathoth Farm.

According to a statement issued by the brand, the name change reflects “the brand’s on-farm production, time-honoured manufacturing practices and just-like-homemade, premium quality products.”

As part of the rebrand, all Anathoth Farm products will feature a new label and a new pot. The manufacturer says the old packaging didn’t go far enough in acknowledging Anathoth Farm’s “real country story” and 25 year history.

The jam’s plastic pot is being replaced with a new plastic pottle featuring a twist-top lid. Designed in Denmark and made in New Zealand, Anathoth Farms is the first brand to bring the technology to the Southern Hemisphere.

“Our new packaging and labelling better reflects Anathoth Farm’s country heritage, superior tasting products and farm-made quality. It’s the best tasting jam which is backed up by winning the Canstar Blue Taste Award for jam in Australia,” said Anathoth Farm sales and marketing manager, Danielle Esplin.

 

Strongbow to undergo brand refresh

Part of the Carlton & United Breweries (CUB) group, Strongbow cider is undergoing a brand refresh, bringing to life the product’s essence of “relaxed simplicity.”

The new branding will include a wood-cut style tree illustration, and the label will have a wood grain finish to reinforce the cider’s origins in the orchard.

General manager of cider for CUB, Craig Maclean said, “Cider remains the fastest growing alcohol category in Australia with people choosing to drink cider more often, particularly over the warmer months and we’ve got to keep up with the changing trends in this category.

“When it comes to Strongbow, we want to embrace the authenticity of the brand while also evolving the look and feel of it to keep up with consumers’ constant thirst for something new.”

Designed by The Collective, the new labels, clusters and cartons aim to create a relaxed feel for Strongbow drinkers.

The new Strongbow will be available from pubs, clubs, bars and bottle shops nationally from this month.

 

Olive oil importers lodge ACCC complaint over ‘misleading’ AOA claims

The industry body representing olive oil importers, the Australian Olive Oil Association (AOOA) has lodged a complaint with the ACCC, stating that a new advertising campaign from the Australian Olive Association (AOA) is promoting ‘misleading information’ on imported oil.

The campaign, which features dietician Dr Joanna McMillan states that Australian olive oil is “fresher, tastier and better for you” – a claim that the AOOA alleges is misleading and has no factual basis. The association also claims that nine out of 10 olive oils tested by the body failed to meet Australian standards.

The AOOA, which represents a significant number of olive oil importers as well as some local growers say that the advertising campaign is ‘actively promoting against’ imported olive oils and that the association is using ‘scare tactics’ to promote its agenda.

AOOA president David Valmorbida, says that the campaign is doing the industry a disservice.

"We feel that there are a number of inaccuracies in the campaign that has been launched by the AOA, which are significantly misleading to consumers and ultimately and not in the best interests of the industry," says Valmorbida.

"They have been involved in active promotion against imported olive oils for some time now. But we do take issue when incorrect information is passed on to consumers because it is not in their best interests.

"Certainly what we don't want is for consumers to turn around and think that there is something wrong with olive oil and the olive oil category and begin reverting their choice to other types of cooking oils which may be less healthy for them.”

Lisa Rowntree, CEO of the AOA said it had comprehensive evidence to support its claims.

"Of course importers are going to try to defend their position, but at the end of the day they know we are right. Embarrassingly for them, most of the oils we tested not only failed the Australian standards but also their own IOC standard," she said.

"This is such a big problem worldwide that the EU has openly admitted that olive oil is their No. 1 issue. Our Australian standard is a robust document that was approved by all the stakeholders, including the importer representatives at that time.

"In fact our Australian standards are now been evaluated and discussed by European authorities to incorporate them in their legislation to fight against the widespread adulteration issue."
 

Fast food companies “force feeding” advertising to children: Choice

Despite creating voluntary codes to restrict the television advertisements of unhealthy foods to children, consumer group Choice has found that fast food companies aren’t applying the same restrictions to their social media marketing and mobile phone apps.

Choice said the growing popularity of mobile phones has caused fast food brands to develop a range of sophisticated strategies aimed at promoting their “unhealthy offerings” to children.

“With children increasingly exposed to junk food advertising via apps, social media, viral marketing and celebrity endorsements, competitions and advergames with embedded brand messages and licensed characters, educating kids about junk food has never been more challenging,” Choice head of media, Tom Godfrey said.

While the food and beverage manufacturing industry has created codes to restrict the advertising of unhealthy foods to children, there’s been widespread criticism of this self-regulation, and a number of studies have questioned its effectiveness, including independent surveys in Europe, Asia, North America and here in Australia.

The Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC), however, is standing strong arguing that self-regulation has been a success.

“With a lifetime customer worth an estimated $100,000 to a retailer, fast food companies have taken to force-feeding junk food advertising to kids through mobile phone applications and social platforms such as YouTube,” said Godfrey.

“Hungry Jack’s Shake and Win app, generates vouchers for free or discounted food when user shake their phone at any Hungry Jack’s store. With one in four Australian children overweight or obese, you have to question whether this is a responsible practice.”

The problem is not limited to mobile phone applications and social media, Choice said, with food companies also using community-based sponsorships to promote junk foods to children.

”Large food companies are mainly concerned with creating brand loyalty. Companies such as McDonald’s say they don’t advertise to children aged under 14, yet they do sponsor children’s sports such as Little Athletics, Hoop Time basketball and Swimming Queensland. KFC and Milo are sponsors of Cricket Australia, and Coca-Cola sponsors Bicycle Network Victoria, which has a program for teens.”

Choice said the sponsorship of children’s sporting events by fast food companies undermines the healthy eating messages that governments and parents try to promote to children, while normalising the relationship between junk food and sport.

“The line between entertainment and advertising is increasingly blurred, with product tie-ins and placement within TV shows and films common practice for food companies seeking to reach children with their messages.”

 

New campaign promotes organic certification [video]

The One Logo Says It all campaign, headed up by Australian Organic, aims to educate consumers on how to purchase certified organic products.

Running for the next three months, celebrity chef and Australian Organic ambassador Pete Evans is fronting the campaign, which is teaching Australians to look for certified organic logos when they choose to shop for organic products.

"The recognisable Australian Certified Organic logo appears on any product that our independent certification agency has deemed certified organic," said Dr Andrew Monk from Australian Organic. "This is the consumer’s 100 percent guarantee that the item they have purchased, whether it is food or wine, textiles or even make-up, was produced and created from the source with the health and welfare of people, animals and the environment in mind.

"Interest and popularity in organic products grows every year and it is more important than ever that we play an active role in protecting all Australians by ensuring they know how to trust that they are buying bona fide certified organic products," he said.

Australian Certified Organic registers over 14,000 products and routinely and randomly audits businesses that use its logo.

Food magazine recently looked at the process manufacturers need to go through in order to gain certification, and also weighed up the pros and cons of going organic. Click here to read more.

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Stella Artois launches 750ml Christmas bottle

Belgium beer brand, Stella Artois has launched a special edition 750ml Christmas bottle just in time for the festive season.

Marketing itself as the ‘original Christmas beer’, Stella was first brewed as a holiday gift in Belgium more than 600 years ago, and today, the brand is continuing the tradition with the launch of the new festive bottle.

The beer features a sleek and simple, yet festive design, and is promoted as the perfect sharing size at 750ml.

The Stella Artois Christmas bottle is avaliable now  throughout Australia and New Zealand.

 

Caffe Aurora enlists Modern Family star to endorse brand

Following consistent sales growth throughout the past few decades, Caffe Aurora has launched a new campaign which enlists Modern Family star, Rico Rodriguez as the new face of the brand.

Rodriguez plays the character of ‘Manny’, an espresso-loving teenager in the successful American television show. Rolando Schirato, Cantarella Bros general manager of sales and marketing, says that the enlistment of Rodrigues represents new territory for the brand, as it has traditionally only engaged in relatively conservative marketing campaigns.

“In the past ten years, our marketing spend has focused heavily on the strength and heritage of the brand. We have loyal customers and we have secured our position in the market by providing quality products and executing simple campaigns,” said Schirato.

The move to launch a new multi-million dollar campaign represents a larger spend than the brand has spent on any marketing activity previously.

Schirato believes that the enlistment of Rodriguez will help the brand achieve its objectives of increased growth and brand recognition.

“Rico has mass audience appeal, which we believe will resonate across a broad cross section of the market,” said Schirato.

The campaign is inclusive of four television commercials which were directed by Michael Spiller and shot in Los Angeles. The campaign will also be complemented with a mix of print, digital, outdoor and in-store advertising, which will be rolling out nationally from 17 November.

“We are thrilled that Rico Rodriguez would throw his weight behind the Caffe Aurora brand,” said Schirato. “The connection between Rico and coffee is one that I think Australians and New Zealanders will really enjoy, just as much as we have putting it together.”

 

Five trends for food manufacturing in 2014

Addressing food waste and health are going to be two of the big trends food manufacturers need to consider in the year ahead, according to Innova Market Insights.

The list is the culmination of ongoing analysis of market trends, developments and product launches around the world.

One of the key challenges manufacturers are expected to face next year is regaining consumer trust, with recent stories regarding inaccurate labelling and misleading marketing material leaving a bad taste in cosumers' mouths.

Innova lists five of the big trends for 2014

1. Waste Not Want Not. For some time now manufacturers’ sustainability efforts have been zeroed in on, with a more recent shift in focus being to reduce food loss or waste, wherever possible. Food loss during production and food waste at the retailer and consumer end of the food-supply chain will be heavily scrutinised. Ingredients derived from the waste stream will also hold enormous potential.

2. You Can Trust Us. Recent food safety scares and scandals have crippled consumer confidence. Ingredient origin will be used as a marketing tool. The consumer should ultimately benefit from higher quality foods that are clearly traceable.

3. Simpler Pleasures. Consumers are reassessing their needs and going back to basics, by finding more pleasure in simpler food. There has been a shift towards home cooking. Where consumers shop has also been affected, with the so-called “hourglass model,” still in effect. This relates to growth on the budget and premium sides, but the centre of the industry is being squeezed. Value packaging and “good value” claims on the products themselves and in-store value promotions are prospering.

4. Look Out For The Small Guy. Small innovators are rising to the challenge, with the development of high quality and distinct products that have small-scale appeal, but big trend potential. Social media platforms have provided more opportunities for small companies to develop a market by directly targeting niches across their home market and abroad.

5. Health is More Holistic. Some big food manufacturers are looking to all areas of health for a more holistic approach in providing nutritious food and beverage solutions to consumers. Clinical nutrition is being eyed as a highly profitable platform along with health alternatives, such as Traditional Chinese Medicine.

 

Soft drinks losing their fizz among young Australians

Australians under the age of 35 are losing their appetite for soft drinks, with those aged 35 to 49 now the most likely to consume soft drink in an average week.

According to Roy Morgan research, the past five years has seen a sharp decline in the number of Australians aged 35 and under consuming soft drinks. In the 12 months to 2009, around two in three Australians aged 14 to 25 or 25-34 had some soft drink in an average week. However, by late June 2013, the consumption rates had dropped nine percentage points, to 56 percent and 57 percent respectively.

Overall, 50 percent of Australians 14 years and over now consume soft drink in a seven day period, down from 56 percent in 2009.

There was also a drop in consumption amongst the 35 to 49 year olds, falling three percentage points to 58 percent. This group, however, is the most likely to have soft drinks in an average week.

The fizzy beverages are least popular in the 50  and over age bracket, with consumption at 40 percent, down from 44 percent.

Not only are young Australians drinking soft drink less often, they're also drinking a smaller amount when they do indulge. The average weekly intake declined by 1.2 to 5.5 glasses among consumers under 25, and by 0.6 to 6.3 glasses among 25 to 34 year olds.

When combined with the decline in overall consumption rates, this equates to around five million fewer glasses of soft drink being drunk per week by Australians under the age of 35.

The same can't be said for the older citizens, with 35 to 49 year olds drinking an average of seven glasses per week, up by 0.1, and those over 50 drinking 6.1 glasses, up 0.2.

Overall weekly intake declined from 6.6 glasses to 6.3.

Angela Smith, group account manager – consumer products, Roy Morgan Research, said the drop in consumption is because of Australians are becoming increasingly health consious. She also said manufacturers will need to understand exactly who is consuming their products, and adjust their marketing accordingly.

“As the number of young Australians who drink soft drink continues to drop, soft drink distributors and marketers will need to gain a better understanding of their new target market in order to stay competitive.”

 

Diageo and Caskstrength Creative use 3D printing to promote new whisky release

Caskstrength Creative and global drinks giant Diageo have partnered to release a new Scotch whisky, using 3D printing as part of their marketing effort.

The whisky, titled simply 3D, is fourth instalment of Caskstrength’s alphabetically-sequenced series of whiskies, following its Arran, BenRiach and Cutty Sark releases. The current blend is 56.4 percent alcohol by volume.

“We were intrigued by the innovative and creative concept driving this product and its inventive marketing activation and were readily persuaded to support it on a one-off basis, as another demonstration of the vibrancy and appeal of Scotch whisky,” The Spirits Business reports Nick Morgan, Diageo’s head of whisky outreach as saying.

Just Drinks reports that the 3D release, available in the UK through Master of Malt for 49.99 pounds a bottle, is a blend of Dailuaine, Dalwhinnie and Dufftown single malt scotches. The label features a design that can be viewed with 3D glasses, as well as a QR code for a 3D printer file for a container.

“We feel that the 3D label and downloadable packaging demonstrate just how innovative Scotch whisky can be,” said Joel Harrison, a co-founder at Caskstrength.


Image: https://www.thespiritsbusiness.com

Australian Ham Week kicks off with Awards for Excellence

Australian Ham Week (10-16 November) is all about celebrating and promoting locally produced pork products, and was kicked off this morning with the announcement of the winners of the Australian PorkMark Awards for Excellence.

The Awards were presented at Warren Turnbull's Chur Burger restaurant today (11 November), and comprised three categories: Traditional Artisan Bone-In Leg, Traditional Artisan Boneless, and, for the first time, Nationally Available.

The Nationally Available category is open to butchers and smallgoods processors who make a ham that is available in at least one retail outlet in every state and territory in Australia.

The winners are:

Overall Winner and Best Australian Ham
Paul Rae, Master Meats, QLD

Traitional Bone-In Leg Ham
1st – Paul Rae, Master Meats, QLD
2nd – John Bartlett, Wattle City Meats, VIC
3rd – Franz Knoll, Barossa Fine Foods, SA

Boneless Ham
1st – Tony Rapone, Betocchi Smallgoods, VIC
2nd – John Yeo, westridge Meats, QLD
3rd – Franz Knoll, Barossa Fine Foods, SA

Best Nationally Available Ham
Bill McDeed, IGA Naturally Smoked Bone-In Leg Ham

Click here to see a full list of state winners.

The awards presentation saw the launch of Australian Ham Week, which aims to raise awareness of locally produced pork products. Close to $10 million worth of imported pork products arrives in Australia each week, equating to over 2.7 million kilograms, and around 75 percent of smallgoods consumed in Australia is made from imported pork (however, imported pork meat can only be used in processed products. Fresh pork has to be Australian, by law).

In order to promote Australian products, Australian Pork established the PorkMark, a square pink label which indicates to consumers that ham (or smallgoods) is made from Australian pork.

 

Love Australian Prawns campaign encourages consumers to choose local

The Australian Council of Prawn Fisheries together with the Australian Prawn Farmers Association will this month launch the Love Australian Prawns campaign which encourages Australians to choose local prawns, and consume them year round.

According to data extracted from an ABARES report, Australians only consume an average of 24 local prawns each year, with 40 percent eaten during Christmas. The Love Australian Prawns encourages Australian’s to ‘redefine’ their idea of ‘celebration’ and include prawns on more occasions.

“As an industry we want to encourage people to eat more Australian prawns. Australians think they’re the seafood kings, but our country doesn’t rank in the top 20 highest seafood consuming countries worldwide,” Says Graeme Stewart, executive officer of the Australian Council of Prawn Fisheries.

“If people enjoy local prawns more often and it generates more demand year-round, it significantly helps Australia’s regional communities and that’s good for all Aussies.”

Executive officer of the Australian Prawn Farmers Association, Helen Jenkins said that the campaign was not aimed at encouraging consumers to eat local prawns every night, but instead to include them in meals more often.

“Aussies are passionate about prawns. While people admit they don’t eat them often enough, people say prawns are special – they don’t want them to be just another meat on a dinner plate,” said Jenkins.

“They told us ‘don’t mess with the prawn’. As an industry, we naturally think prawns deserve to have pride of place more often. That’s the heart of the Love Australian Prawns campaign.

 

Luv-a-Duck to pay $360,000 over misleading claims

Duck meat supplier, Luv-a-Duck, has been ordered to pay $360,000 by the Federal Court for making false representations on its packaging and in marketing material.

The Federal Court has ordered that Luv-a-Duck, a large supplier of duck meat products with a market share of about 40 percent, pay $360,000 in civil pecuniary penalties following action by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. The company must also pay $15,000 towards the ACCC's costs.

The court found that Luv-a-Duck had engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct (or conduct likely to mislead or deceive) and made false representations by using words on its packaging, website, brochures and in a promotion for the Good Food & Wine Show in Adelaide in 2012, that its ducks were:

  • ‘grown and grain fed in the spacious Victorian Wimmera Wheatlands’; and/or
  • ‘range reared and grain fed’ (which mainly appeared as a logo).

The ACCC argued that these descriptions suggested Luv-a-Duck's products were from ducks that spent at least a substantial amount of time outdoors, were raised in a spacious outside environment and were of a different quality than duck meat products processed from barn-raised ducks.

In actual fact, Luv-a-Duck's ducks didn't spent any time outside their barn.

"This penalty is a further warning to the poultry industry and businesses generally that consumers are entitled to trust that what is said on product packaging and other promotional product material is true and accurate," said ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said.

"Traders who abuse the trust of Australian consumers may also find themselves exposed to similar enforcement action."

Credence claims, particularly in the food and beverage manufacturing industry, have been a point of focus for the ACCC this year.

Just last week, Baiada Poultry and Bartter Enterprises, the suppliers and processors of Steggles chicken products were ordered to pay $400,000 in penalties over misleading 'free to roam' claims.

Water brands making 'organic' claims were also directed by the ACCC to remove such claims from their bottled water products.

Deputy chairwoman for the ACCC, Delia Rickard, said "Organic standards acknowledge that water cannot be organic. Any claim that particular water is organic would therefore be misleading or deceptive."

 

Dairy Farmers and Ecoeggs amongst Choice’s Shonky winners

Consumer group, Choice, has named and shamed a number of brands, including Dairy Farmers and Ecoeggs, as part of its annual Shonky Awards.

Announced today, the Shonky Awards "shine a spotlight on products and services that are sneaky, slippery, unscrupulous and sometimes unsafe. The risk of receiving an infamous Shonky encourages businesses to lift their game and put consumers first," said Choice chief executive, Alan Kirkland.

This year, a record 439 nominations were received from across the country.

Dairy Farmers' Oats Express Liquid Breakfast – Banana and Honey was one of the award recipients.

"This product, with pictures of whole oats, banana slices and a honey dipper on the pack, claims to be a smooth 'blend of milk, oat fibre and real banana.' The ingredients panel tells a different story – actually banana extract and it appears to be missing the honey," Choice said.

Certified free range egg company, Ecoeggs, was another Shonky winner, earning the award for its stocking density of 20,000 birds per hectare, more than 13 times higher than the national model code definition of 1,500 birds per hectare.

"[With] a premium price tag and only 10 eggs in a pack, we think Ecoeggs offer very poor value under the cover of green-washing. Choice was also left wondering – what, exactly, is 'eco' about this product?"

Choice recently submitted its second-ever ‘super-complaint’ to NSW Fair Trading, requesting that the government body investigate whether 'free range' egg claims are misleading consumers.

In the super-complaint Choice demonstrated that on average, free range eggs can cost up to twice as much as caged eggs and close to a fifth more than barn eggs. Despite the significant increase in price, Choice says that consumers cannot be confident that they are purchasing a truly free range product as there is no consistency in industry standards.

Other brands named and shamed in this year's Shonky awards are:

  • Nuk Starlight Silicone Orthodontic Soother (0-6 months)
  • Credit Repair Australia
  • Kleenex Mansize Tissues
  • Energy Australia
  • EA
  • Qantas Frequent Flyer Toolbar

For more information on these awards, click here.

 

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