Cadbury freezes all ads amid salmonella scare

LONDON - Cadbury has pulled its high-profile sponsorship of ITV's 'Coronation Street' until further notice and put its advertising plans on ice after recalling more than 1m chocolate bars due to fears of salmonella contamination.

According to insiders, the company initially wanted to replace the idents, which it uses to promote products across its range, with a message designed to "reassure" consumers. However, Ofcom rules would not permit it.

Cadbury's sponsorship of 'Coronation Street' is the biggest deal of its type, worth £10m a year. It accounts for more than half of the company's media spend, and was  recently used to promote the launch of its Creme Egg bars, in support of TV ads.

The ads have also been pulled, even though the brand was not affected by the salmonella contamination scare and has not been recalled from retailers.

"This is a short-term measure in the light of the current issue," said a Cadbury spokesman.

In contrast, British Airways, which last week became embroiled in a price-fixing investigation by the Office of Fair Trading in the UK and the Department of Justice in the US, is continuing to run executions for its short-haul fares, with the company claiming it was "business as usual".

Cadbury has been criticised for the time lapse between the initial discovery of a salmonella strain in January and its confirmation last week to the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and environmental health officials. Questions have been raised as to whether it withheld information about the contamination until after the key Easter sales period.

The recall was announced on Friday. By Monday afternoon, a Cadbury spokeswoman claimed "the vast majority" of affected products had been removed from shelves, though she would not indicate a percentage.

Cadbury said it did not report the contamination because the levels, which were under the authorised threshold, were so low.

An FSA spokesman said any contamination of a ready-to-eat product warrants a product recall. "Chocolate is a high conductor of salmonella and needs only a low level of contamination to be a risk to health," he added.

If you have an opinion on this or any other issue raised on Brand Republic, join the debate in the Forum.

Discussion

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now

Latest

John Lewis walks consumers through its history to celebrate 150 years of business
Waitrose boosts content strategy with 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose' C4 tie-up
Hottest virals: Cute puppies star in Pedigree ad, plus Idris Elba and Fruyo
Amnesty International burns candles to illuminate new hope
Toyota achieves the impossible by calming angry Roman drivers
Tom of Finland's 'homoerotic' drawings made into stamps
YouTube reveals user habits to appeal to 'older' marketers
Ex-M&S marketing chief Steven Sharp consulting at WPP
Wolff Olins reveals new CEO after Apple poaches Karl Heiselman
Glasgow offers £30,000 prize to best digital idea for 2014 Commonwealth Games
Google's revenues surge but shares drop as it grapples with transition to mobile
Facebook beats Twitter to most 'marketing friendly' social media site crown, says DMA
Fableists believe children like Finn should be outdoors enjoying life
Homebase, Baileys and Camelot join the line-up at Media360
MasterCard renews Rugby World Cup sponsorship to push cashless message
Lynx unleashes £9m 'Peace invasion' campaign
Social Brands 100 Youth: Pizza Hut most social youth brand in UK
Cheryl Cole is wild and arresting in new L'Oreal work
Morrisons told not to show alcohol ads during YouTube nursery rhymes
O2 head of brand Shadi Halliwell departs after 23 years at company in restructure
Tesco hit by further sales decline as it turns to digital Clubcard and social network
Branding guru Wally Olins dies aged 83
Duracell short film captures epic Transatlantic voyage
Ash runs Tinder experiment to show smokers are less desirable to opposite sex
British Airways teams up with Gerry Cottle Jnr for summer of rooftop film screenings
Arklu says 'girls can be superheroes too' with doll design competition
Coke enters squash market with Oasis Mighty Drops
Virgin Galactic signs up Land Rover as space flight sponsor
Motorola marketer Andrew Morley departs as Google gears up for sale to Lenovo
US Airways apologises after tweeting obscene image at a customer