Lewis Silkin – Ads & Brands Law Digest: December 2023

Advertising and marketing

ASA consults on restrictions for “less healthy” foods

The ASA is consulting on the implementation of new rules further limiting food and drink advertising to children on TV, and in on-demand programme services (ODPS) and paid online ad media.

New rules are due to come into effect from October 2025. They will prohibit ads for identifiable less healthy products from being included in Ofcom-regulated TV services and ODPS between 5.30am and 9pm, and from being placed in paid-for space in online media at any time. Less healthy products are a subset of products classified as high fat, salt or sugar, which have been subject to dedicated restrictions in the UK Advertising Codes since 2007. The less healthy product rules will form a new tier of rules in addition to CAP and BCAP’s existing HFSS rules.

The consultation covers three areas:

  • guidance to accompany the new rules;
  • transposition of the legislation into new UK Advertising Code rules for each of the restrictions; and
  • technical updates to the existing rules to ensure interoperability of the less healthy product rules with the existing rules on HFSS advertising.

The consultation ends on 7 February 2024.

For more information, see here and here.

CAP and BCAP review rules on targeting of cosmetic interventions

On 25 November 2021, CAP and BCAP introduced new rules that prohibit cosmetic interventions advertising from being directed at under-18s. The targeting restrictions came into effect on 25 May 2022 after a 6-month implementation period. The targeting rules essentially require that:

  • Ads for cosmetic interventions must not appear in non-broadcast media directed at under-18s;
  • Such ads must not appear in other non-broadcast media where under-18s make up over 25% of the audience; and
  • Broadcast ads for cosmetic interventions must not appear during or adjacent to programmes commissioned for,
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