Victory for California Raisins in FSA dispute

After many months spent contesting the Ofcom/FSA rulings regarding advertising certain foods to children, California Raisins have announced that raisins now pass the Nutrient Profile set out by the Food Standards Agency.

This means that raisins are now approved under the guidelines for advertising to Children on television. The move follows contentious parameters proposed by Ofcom in April 2007.

Responding to growing levels of obesity in UK children, it introduced a ban on advertising foods deemed unhealthy by FSA standards during the hours that children watch television. These standards are set using a nutrient profiling model that differentiates foods that are high in fat, sugar and salt levels from healthy alternatives.

However, certain healthy foods such as California Raisins, honey and Marmite were deemed unhealthy by this model because of their natural sugar and salt content.

California Raisins are widely regarded as an extremely healthy snack or ingredient for children and adults alike. A tablespoon of California Raisins counts as one 5 A Day portion, and even the government’s Change4Life campaign suggests snacking on “a handful of tasty raisins as a treat”.

The ban on advertising to children has caused an ongoing dispute over the past two years, but in the case of California Raisins, and raisins in general, this dispute has finally been resolved.

This April, the FSA agreed that California Raisins need not be subject to advertising restrictions; a great success for those who campaigned for the change and, more importantly, a great achievement by all in making children and parents all the more aware of the healthy attributes of California Raisins.

“We are delighted that Ofcom has now seen sense and drawn up new guidelines which allow the promotion and marketing of such a healthy natural product as California Raisins, this bodes well for the future,” added California Raisins’ UK marketing director, Peter Meadows.