Ribena isn’t as good for you as it thinks it is, says ASA

7 May 2014

While children might be taken in by those healthy, bouncing blackcurrants, everybody else knows that it’s just purple sugar liquid which has the potential to create a dental apocalypse.


Apart from, it would seem, Ribena itself, whose latest promotion has been banned because they’ve over-exaggerated health claims. The website for Ribena Plus, which has no added sugar (that’s ‘added’ sugar), went a little bit over the top about its vitamin content.

By saying ‘vitamin A… helps keep your vision in tip top condition’ and ‘Vitamin C... it helps immunity’, they flouted EU guidelines and have found themselves in hot water with the Advertising Standards Authority.

The ASA has ruled that they failed to convey the meaning of the EU’s health claims to shoppers, because they implied that vitamins optimise the body’s performance rather than just maintaining it.

‘Ribena Plus – maintains normal function!’ – catchy, eh?

This is the second brand formerly made by GlaxoSmithKline that has been in trouble with the ASA for overstating health claims. Lucozade Sport’s ads were banned when it claimed that it ‘hydrates better than water.’

Still, you can’t really blame them. Attempting to translate convoluted EU health guidelines for the average consumer is a copywriting minefield - let alone trying to make it jolly and rhyming and blackcurrant-y…

TOPICS:   Consumer Advice   Advertising   World News

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