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ASAI upholds complaint about claim in dairy council ad

The National Dairy Council has been asked to withdraw an advertisement claiming Irish milk is the most climate-friendly in the world.

The Advertising Standards Authority of Ireland (ASAI) has ruled that the advertisement, which includes the claims “Irish dairy has one of the lowest dairy carbon footprints in the World” and that “litre for litre, Irish milk has a footprint half the size of milk produced in most other countries” should not reappear in its current form.

The ASAI was responding to a complaint which described the advertisement as “greenwashing” and noted that the study cited by the National Dairy Council on global average carbon footprint for milk was 13 years old.

It concluded that “a study from 2010, without evidence of the average global figure not having changed, was not sufficient evidence for a claim made in the advertising 13 years after the study,”

The authority also reflected on the claim made in the advertisement that 96% of Irish dairy farmers had signed up to sustainability programmes.

It noted that “no information had been provided in the advertisement as to how farmers who sign up to the sustainability programme actually helped the environment.

They considered the lack of information had potential to mislead.

The ASAI recommended that “advertisements should not refer to sustainability programmes without directing consumers to a source of information that provided an explanation as to how the impact of such programmes have helped and/or were intended to help the environment”.

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