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Monthly Archives: June 2013

Action On New Type of Global Pledge Program

The Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) launched its self-regulatory Health and Wellness Initiative in June 2011 but it has been very much under the radar for the past two years. The Initiative is in the form of resolutions regarding the marketing of food with the objective of supporting healthier diets and lifestyles. It complements existing Pledge programs. Significant resolutions are:

–  Continuing to develop / improve affordability and availability of existing products and  services that support the goal of healthier diets and lifestyles

–  Reducing the overall energy, salt/sodium, sugars, saturated and trans-fat content of our 
foods and beverages to help address public health priorities

 –  Developing product sizes for a range of consumer needs

 –  Promoting consumption of fruits and vegetables.

– Committing to voluntary, company-specific measures to ensure that any advertising to children under the age of 12 years is only for products which fulfil specific nutrition criteria based on scientific evidence and /or applicable national and international dietary guidelines or that we do not advertise at all on media directed to children under the age of 12 years.

 A few days ago CGF launched its Action Plan with the main message to industry being “Now its Time to Act”

 A full copy of the Initiative with all resolutions can be accessed on this link http://healthandwellness.mycgforum.com/resolutions.html

 A video message from a variety of food business leaders can be accessed on this link


ICC Developing Guidelines for Alcohol Advertising

Earlier this month a group of experts met in New York to discuss and develop a draft guide that identifies the Principles in the ICC Code that apply to alcohol advertising and marketing communications.

 The ICC Code is not product specific but contains provisions that apply to all forms of advertising and marketing communications. Having a Framework that identifies the relevant provisions that apply to alcohol will be most useful.

 Further information may be found on the following link http://www.iccwbo.org/News/Articles/2013/Experts-developing-framework-for-responsible-marketing-of-alcohol/


Regulating Internet Advertising – An Innovative Initiative

Online Behavioural Advertising (OBA) is a type of Internet advertising that is ever increasingly being used to target consumers in the Asia-Pacific region. OBA is also enjoying extraordinary growth throughout the Asia-Pacific region. However it is unlikely that consumers are aware that they are being targeted. Furthermore OBA is cross-border therefore is generally unregulated.

OBA works like this. You go into Google or some other search engine site to look up hotel accommodation in Singapore. A cookie is then sent on your computer that indicates you are interested in travel. When you next use your computer ads will appear for special flight and hotel deals in Asia-Pacific destinations. The more times you search the more cookies you attract and the ads you see on websites become more and more relevant to you.

In various Asia-Pacific countries there are codes that prescribe the expected behaviour of advertisers. The local Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) usually develops the codes. Additionally the local advertising self-regulatory organisation sets advertising standards will deal with complaints.

The European Interactive Digital Advertising Alliance (EDAA) has recently launched a new initiative to educate consumers about OBA and to inform them of their rights to complain. There is also the facility to turn advertisers off or on. The EDAA is an organisation with membership from the IABs, advertising self-regulatory organisations, media and advertisers.

The website is http://www.youronlinechoices.eu It is well worth a visit.

Could the initiative be replicated in Asia-Pacific? The short answer is yes. The most practical way is to have the various industry groups coordinate in in a self-regulatory manner as they have in Europe. Government regulation is a possibility but it would be most difficult involving international treaties and agreements. However Governments would have a key role in encouraging and supporting industry organisations to organise and operate such an initiative.