Did you know a consumer can complain against a misguiding food advertisement? Yes, this is possible. A misleading food advertisement that promotes unhealthy eating could be called off across all media channels. It is important that consumers report their views which can be easily done on the Advertising Standards Council of India ( ASCI) portal or by downloading their mobile
Food Advertising can be misleading especially in the case of children. Therefore parents have to be have limited media time. Children do not have the ability to differentiate between puffery and fact and cannot understand that what they are receiving is commercial speech intended to persuade them.Parents can lodge complains on the same, if they feel that this sort of advertisements have influenced their children tremendously and urged them to buy unhealthy products.
Let’s understand how do we go about reporting a misleading food advertisement.
Reporting a Food Advertisement
The Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) is the advertising industry's self- regulating body that has the objective of regulating the content of advertisements, so as to ensure the protection of consumer's interests.
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between FSSAI and ASCI in June 2016 to regulate misleading advertisements in the food and beverage (F&B) sector. As per ASCI data, the F&B sector is the third largest defaulter when it comes to misleading ads, after education and healthcare. As per the agreement, ASCI will monitor more than 800 newspapers and magazines in more than 14 languages in different editions. The self-regulatory body will also monitor more than 400 television channels for potentially misleading ads.
Consumers can file a complaint against a misleading advertisement on the ASCI website or by downloading a mobile application, ASCIonline, from Google Play store or any other application store. The website/mobile application allows the consumer to track the complaint that has been filed. If any food or beverage advertisement is found to be misleading, then the advertisement shall be called off from all media channels.
Here is the link to the ASCI website for filing a complaint:
https://www.ascionline.org/index.php/ lodge-ur- complaints.html
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