“It's almost 5pm. Time to say we want more! We want....oh… We already have it.
Fuel good from Applegreen. Our most advanced fuel ever, at no extra cost. The fuel revolution starts here. Applegreen - low fuel prices, always.”
The complainant considered the slogan “Low fuel prices, always” to be misleading and untrue. He considered that the fuel prices were not low and that they were on the rise. He also considered the advertisers’ prices were not low in comparison to other fuel providers.
The advertisers in providing substantiation for their use of the slogan “Low fuel prices, always” referred to the driving objective of their pricing strategy since the launch of their brand in 2005. They said they had researched quantitatively with consumers and had nationally representative evidence to support this claim on both a consumer perception and buying behaviour basis. They said that in June 2018 they began additising their fuel to provide greater fuel efficiency and value for their customers, at no extra cost to them.
They said they were making a relative claim, not an absolute or directly comparative one, and that this was typified in many industries such as air travel, hotels, retail, financial services, etc.
The advertisers noted that the majority of the components of the fuel price were outside of their control. They said that 95% of the price was made up by government charges and product and distribution costs(1). They said that oil prices were determined on international markets and fluctuate regularly. In addition, they said that approximately 60% of the amount the customer paid for fuel at the pump were excise duties, VAT and government levies, which fluctuate depending on the international market price.
The advertisers said that for things that were in their control, they made every effort to live up to their “Low fuel prices, always” slogan commitment. The advertisers provided, on a confidential basis, analysis of their pricing versus competitors for their claim “Low fuel prices, always”.
Complaint Not Upheld.
The Complaints Committee considered the detail of the complaint and the advertisers’ response. They noted the advertisers’ comments in relation to making a relative rather than an absolute claim. They also noted that they had provided evidence to demonstrate their ‘low’ claim promise.
The Committee concluded that the advertising was unlikely to mislead consumers and did not uphold the complaint.
No further action required.