By Rachel Moss
Poster adverts for McDonald’s and Burger King have been banned for “inappropriately targeting children”, due to their placement close to primary schools.
McDonald’s received complaints about an advert displaying Cadbury Flake McFlurrys and Mini McFlurrys alongside the slogan “SUN’S OUT Funs out”, which was placed close to the entrance of a primary school at a bus stop.
Burger King’s ‘Whopper Jr’ meal deal advert also came under fire for being displayed at a bus stop near a primary school. The meal deal featured an image of the whopper burger, fries and a zero sugar Coca Cola with the tagline “A Whopper Jr. of a deal £2.99”.
The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned both ads from appearing in this way again.
The ASA ruled that both the McDonald’s and Burger King products counted as ‘HFSS Products’. HFSS products are food or drink products that are assessed as being high in fat, salt or sugar in accordance with Department of Health nutrient profiling.
In the UK, HFSS products can not be directly marketed in spaces where the audience consists of more than 25 per cent under-16s, for example, close to school or during children’s TV.
Additionally, where the content is likely to be seen as directly targeting under-12s, it cannot include promotions, licensed characters or celebrities popular with under-16s.
Both the McDonald’s ad and Burger King ad were placed within 100 metres of primary schools.
In response to complaints, Burger King Ltd said that the poster had since been removed. JCDecaux, the bus stop advertising company that works with brands, stated that the issue had arisen due to a data conflict in their booking system which meant the Burger King ad had been incorrectly placed.
In relation to the McFlurry ad, McDonald’s stated it had instructed JCDecaux to not to place any posters displaying HFSS products within 200 metres of any school, and that JCDecaux was solely responsible for the placement of the ad.
JCDecaux said it had placed the ad in error and confirmed it had been removed.