Nestle Cereal Partners UK in talks over misleading advert

By Linda Rano

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Cereal partners, Nutrition, Eating

A TV advert for Nestlé cereals must not be broadcast again in its
current form because it contains misleading information about
eating wholegrain foods, said the UK Advertising Standards
Authority (ASA).

The advert showed people talking about wholegrain with the voice-over comment: "Experts say you need three servings of wholegrain a day…All of these Nestlé cereals have wholegrain guaranteed. Not all cereals do…Look for three a day on Nestlé cereals…On your way to three a day​." Wholegrain foods ASA ruling ​After seven viewers challenged the claim that experts recommend three servings of wholegrain a day,​ the ASA sought advice from the Food Standards Agency (FSA). It confirmed there was no specific UK government recommendation on the amount of wholegrain goods that should be eaten. Although it recommended UK adults should eat more fibre, that could be found in a range of products and was not exclusive to wholegrain foods, said the FSA. The ASA ruled that viewers were likely to conclude from the advert that there were recognised health benefits to be gained by eating three portions of wholegrain a day. The ad implied that there was a consensus of opinion among experts regarding the specific quantity of wholegrain foods that should be consumed per day. But only some experts have recommended that specific amounts of wholegrain should be eaten each day and others, such as the FSA, have made a broader recommendation that people should increase their intake of fibre in general, said the ASA. Also the similarity between the advert's 3-a-day message and the government's 5-a-day recommendation for fruit and vegetables could cause confusion among viewers, it added. A spokesperson for Nestle Cereal Partners UK told BakeryandSnacks.com that: "We take great care to ensure that theinformation in our advertisements is accurate and substantiated. We are continuing to liaise with the ASA about this matter​." Joint Venture ​ Nestlé UK confirms on its website that Nestlé breakfast cereals are manufactured by Cereal Partners, a joint venture between Nestlé and General Mills. Cereal Partners, one of the UK's leading cereal manufacturers, provided a document summarising the findings of several epidemiological studies in a number of countries which it believed demonstrated a link between wholegrain and the prevention of certain diseases and conditions. Some of these studies had quantified recommendations for the amount of wholegrain that should be consumed. The authors said that the American government in its publication Dietary Guidelines for Americans​ advised consumers to aim to eat three 16g portions of wholegrain foods per day and believed that two studies undertaken by the FSA endorsed this advice. Cereal Partners added that it intended to refer to wholegrains as an ingredient not as a nutritional claim. But nine out of ten people in the UK did not eat enough wholegrains and the ad was designed to increase people's awareness of the need to eat more, it added.

Related topics: Nestlé, Markets

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