Social Media posts on the advertisers’ own Facebook page featured the following:
An image of two open suitcases full of Tayto crisps packets. Behind the suitcases were
stacked boxes of Tayto crisps. The post was captioned with the following:
"Monday musing: "Just have one...SAID NOONE EVER"
An image of a broken Easter egg and an open Tayto crisp packet with the cracked egg
containing some of the crisps. The post was captioned with the following:
“I'm still working my way through the Easter chocolate & I'm trying out some flavoursome
combinations! First up is...
Dark chocolate and Cheese & Onion (Don't knock it until you've tried it!). Anyone with
An image of a sharing pack of Tayto Mighty Munch was captioned with the following:
A sound spud just sent me this pic. He said he's not sharing! Who would :)"
The complainant considered that the posts were in breach of the Code on the following
That the posts were being viewed by children under 16 and were therefore targeting children.
That each post encouraged excessive and irresponsible consumption of the product.
The advertisers said that they engage in responsible marketing of their range and support
industry initiatives which seek to limit the exposure of children to inappropriate
advertising. They said that they were committed to the EU pledge relating to the
advertising of food and beverages to children and as such they do not promote products to
The advertisers said that the images objected to had appeared on their
Facebook page. They said that the available analytics of their Facebook page estimated
that 13 to 17 year olds represented 1.29% of their fans, therefore, 98.7% of their Facebook
fans were over the age of 18. They said that this was aggregated demographic data based
on the age and gender information provided by their Facebook fans in their user profiles.
Complaint 2: They said that they used Facebook to engage with Tayto fans in a lighthearted
manner and that the tone of their posts were intended to be entertaining, supportive
or motivating. They said that the subject matter was rarely serious and the interaction of
fans on the page was generally positive. In regards to the images themselves, they said
that two out of the three were “user-generated content”, content created and shared publicly by fans.
They said that they had re-used the images (suitcase and Mighty Munch) which had been sent to them and applied their own captions.
They said that all captions together with the relevant images were intended to be fun and entertaining to their fans
and were not intended to encourage irresponsible nor immoderate consumption of their
products and they did not believe that their mostly adult fan base (98.7%) on Facebook
would interpret them in this way.
Finally they said that they understood the concerns raised and would like to assure the
complainant that they have taken their comments on board and would give particular
consideration to the potential for misinterpretation of their future social media posts.
The Food Pyramid(1) published by Healthy Ireland recommends that foods high in salt,
sugar or fat should be consumed no more than twice a week.
The Irish Heart Foundation advise that a food is high in salt, sugar or fat if it exceeds the
following per 100g(2):
Salt: Over 1.5g | Sugar: Over 22.5g | Fat: Over 17.5g
The nutrient composition of the two products(3) were:
Tayto Cheese and Onion per 100g: Salt - 1.5g | Sugar - 0.6g | Fat – 34.3g
Mighty Munch: Salt - 2.3g | Sugar – 6.3g | Fat – 23.8g
(3) Product package “Typical Nutritional Information”
Upheld In Part.
The Complaints Committee considered the detail of the complaint and the advertisers’
The Committee noted the concerns raised by the complainant and that they considered the
posts were targeting children. The Committee noted the analytics provided by the
advertisers in regards to their Facebook fans which showed that 98.7% of their fans were
over 18. In the light of the analytics and on examining the posts, the Committee did not
consider that the posts were targeting children.
The Committee did not uphold Complaint 1 against Post 1, 2 and 3.
The Committee noted that a very significant amount of product had been depicted. In
considering whether the marketing communications could be interpreted as suggesting
that all the product depicted be consumed by an individual, the Committee did not consider
the marketing communication was suggesting that it all be consumed immediately.
However, they did consider that that the text was recommending the consumption of more
than one packet at a time. Taking account of national dietary guidelines and the product’s
nutritional composition, the Committee considered that the marketing communication
encouraged excess consumption and was in breach of Section 8.4 of the Code.
The Committee upheld Complaint 2 against Post number 1.
The Complaints Committee noted that two products had been depicted but that the main
message related to different flavour combinations. They considered that the use of the
term “still working my way through” implied that consumption of the product would take
place at different times rather than all at the one time. They did not consider that the
marketing communication encouraged or condoned excess consumption.
The Committee did not uphold Complaint 2 against Post number 2.
The Complaints Committee noted that the product pack was intended as a sharing pack
but that the marketing communication condoned the intention of consumption of the pack
by an individual. They accepted that a time frame had not been indicated. Taking account
however, of national dietary guidelines and the product’s nutritional composition, the
Committee were concerned that the marketing communication was encouraging excess
consumption and considered that it was in breach of Section 8.4 of the Code.
The Committee upheld Complaint 2 against Post number 3.
Post 1 and Post 3 must be withdrawn or amended. Care must be taken when creating
marketing communications to avoid the encouragement of excess consumption.