Food firms pledge more inclusive advertising in France

By Niamh Michail contact

- Last updated on GMT

© GettyImages/Tijana87
© GettyImages/Tijana87
Nespresso, Unilever, Danone and Avril are among the companies that have pledged to advertise responsibly with fewer stereotypes, signing a 15-point voluntary chart launched by the Union of Advertisers (UDA).

The FAIRe programme "responds to emerging issues [in digital advertising] as well as to the ever-increasing expectations of the public: respect for privacy, transparency and the reflection of the diversity of society", ​said the UDA.

So far, 28 member companies from a range of sectors have signed up. Food companies include Coca-Cola, Danone, Ferrero, Nestle, Orange, Orangina, Pernod Ricard, Unilever and Avril for its consumer-facing Lesieur brand.

The charter has 15 commitments, one of which is “combatting recurring stereotypes​”, although it gives no definition for such stereotypes.

Another is the pledge to make adverts more accessible to the 8% of the French population that suffers from hearing loss by subtitling  major television campaigns.

This action will help avoid the lack of engagement between editorial and cultural programmes, which are subtitled, and advertising breaks, which are not​,” the UDA said.

The full chart can be seen here​ (in French).

President of the UDA Etienne Lecomte called on advertisers to join the FAIRe Programme "for the sustainability of our companies and our brands".

Secretary of state for the digital sector Mounir Mahjoubi voiced his support in a video message. “Mistrust of the media, public powers and business is increasing, and so any action that strives to strengthen this trust is welcome," ​he said.

"I offer complete support to the FAIRe programme which will restore this trust by making communication more accessible, fighting against stereotypes and creating an environment that is safe and lively with advertising that is acceptable."

Director general of Nespresso France Arno Deschamps said the commitments were essential to restoring trust among consumers.

The launch, held at Twitter France this week, also saw the editor of Philosophie Magazine, Alexandre Lacroix, take to the stage. “Is responsible communication possible in this age of instant information? It is up to you to construct it by preserving the relationship with the public.”

The UDA will publish a mid-term review of the FAIRe programme in 2019 to highlight good practices, it said, while signatories will have to produce annual reports and provide public evidence of their actions.

The association will provide all members who have signed up to the chart with the tools needed to implement the guidelines.

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