The OPC complained that the advertisement breached the Responsible Children’s Marketing Initiative (RCMI) code because it is a communication directed primarily to children based on the themes and visuals and does not promote healthy dietary habits or physical activity.
The ad, which was aired on TV and is on YouTube, shows young children playing in a treehouse marked ‘no grown ups’. A woman stands below with a box of Kellogg’s choc chip LCM snack bars.
When she opens the box, individual puffs of rice and chocolate chips float up into the air towards the tree house and form into a bar that appears in the hand of one of the children, who looks at it with amazement. A voiceover and a message at the end says ‘Light up their afternoons with the awesomeness of puffed rice’.
The OPC argued the advertisement will have strong appeal to children’s sense of wonder, imagination and adventure. The ad was also played on commercial television during programs and times that are popular with children.
The Ad Standards Panel considered the theme, content and visuals of the advertisement. The Panel considered that while the theme of playing in a treehouse may appeal to children, the overall theme of a grandmother watching her children play would be appealing to older audiences. The Panel considered the overall theme of the advertisement was nostalgic and focussed on the experience of the grandmother and that this is a theme which was not directed primarily to children under 12.
The Panel also considered that overall the visuals in the advertisement were equally attractive to both adults and children and were not directed primarily to children under 12.
The Panel noted that the advertisement was shown during television programs popular with children such as ‘My Kitchen Rules’, ‘the Big Bash League’, ‘House Rules’, and ‘American Ninja Warrior’ and that these shows have high child audiences. The Panel considered that the audience data for these programs show that they have a child audience of less than 35%. The Panel acknowledged that these programs are watched by children with their families, however considered that the programs are equally attractive to teenagers and adults and are not directed primarily to children under 12.
The Panel found the advertisement overall did not breach the RCMI and dismissed the complaint.
Read the Ad Standards Panel’s decision on Kellogg’s LCMs advertisement.