Monday 10 December 2018

Beanz means banned as Heinz ad is canned

A still from the Heinz TV advert banned by the ASA
A still from the Heinz TV advert banned by the ASA

A Heinz television advert teaching viewers how to use tin cans to drum out a song has been banned for encouraging behaviour that risks health and safety.

The advert featured children, teenagers and adults using empty or full Heinz Baked Beanz tins to drum out the rhythm of the song, with the catchline "Learn the #CanSong".

Nine viewers complained that the advert encouraged "unsafe practice" and six believed it featured behaviour that could be dangerous for children to copy.

Heinz said the advert showed people tapping the can on its sealed top, bottom or sides - all "safe" surfaces - and did not show anyone putting their hand or fingers inside the can.


The company said consumers had uploaded their own versions of the song on to social media sites, "which was evidence that copying the ad was not prejudicial to their health or safety".

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) noted that consumers were "unlikely to be as proficient as the actors" at flipping and twirling the can around.

It said that "in any case, particularly given the manoeuvres required, it might still be possible that mistakes could be made with an empty can, which might include a hand or fingers being inserted into an open tin, with the associated risk of cuts".

It said the advert itself did not include any instructions to consumers to ensure a tin can was made safe before attempting to learn the song.

"For the reasons given and because the ad did not include information on how to ensure consumer safety when recreating the song, we concluded that the ad condoned and encouraged behaviour that prejudiced health or safety," the ASA said.

It ruled that the advert must not be broadcast again in its current form, adding: "We told Heinz to ensure future ads did not condone or encourage behaviour that prejudiced health and safety."

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