McDonald’s has been forced to pull a TV advert from the airwaves after it was found to have marketed ‘high fat, salt, and sugar’ meals to children.
The ad shows a young girl trying to impress her mother so her parents take her to the fast food restaurant.
The naughty girl removes arrows from photos of her brother, washes pink dye out of a dog’s fur, makes her bed and retrieves car keys from a fish tank to please her mum.
The Obesity Policy Coalition made the complaint, saying that the child being rewarded with a trip to McDonald’s was a ‘pester power’ tactic being used by the fast food giant and was aimed at children.
McDonald’s has been forced to pull a television advertisement from the airwaves after claims it was aimed at children
The ad features a young girl fixing her bad behaviour to earn a trip to the restaurant
‘McDonald’s may claim that the themes of family togetherness and children being cheeky are designed to appeal broadly to adults as well as children. Yet the entire ad is from the perspective of a child,’ Jane Martin from the OPC said.
The OPC said that at a time when families are indoors more than usual, the government should be cracking down on sneaky marketing tactics promoting unhealthy foods.
McDonald’s are members of an initiative about responsible fast food advertising in which they agree not to advertise to children under 14 years of age in some media unless it is healthier options.
Ms Martin said the ‘self-regulated’ codes in the industry were not working.
‘It’s naïve to entrust our children’s health to the same companies that are actively encouraging them to consume unhealthy foods.’
The Advertising Standards Community Panel upheld the complaint and found that the ad did not represent healthier options as a burger and chips feature prominently.
The panel also found the ad was directed primarily at children – not because of the content – but because it was played in spots where children represent over 35 per cent of the audience.
The fast food franchise has now removed the advertisement from it’s promotions.
Daily Mail Australia has contacted McDonald’s for comment.
The fast food franchise has now removed the advertisement from it’s promotions