Technical updates to the infant and follow-on formula rules


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Published
Jul 12th '23
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Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) and Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practice (BCAP) have made technical updates to the information supporting the UK Advertising Codes’ rules on the advertising of infant and follow-on formula. The rules reflect legislation which creates specific controls for such advertising, including a prohibition on nearly all infant formula advertising.

 

Changes in the underlying EU legislation, now retained in UK law post-EU exit, will now be reflected in the introductory text to the rules. The new legislative arrangements to not significantly alter what is required of formulae advertisers. However, CAP and BCAP are in the process of reviewing the rules to consider whether changes are necessary to ensure that they are properly aligned with what new legislation says. The Committees will report publicly on the outcome of the review later in the year.

 

The following tables include comparisons of the existing and revised wording of the ‘Infant and Follow-on Formula’ sub-sections of the respective food sections of the UK Advertising Codes. The updates do not have a material impact on advertising policy and practice, so they come into effect immediately.

 

BCAP Code section 13 will be amended as follows:

 

Existing wording

 

Revised wording

 

Infant and Follow-on Formula

These rules must be read in conjunction with the relevant legislation including the Infant Formula and Follow-on Formula Regulations 2007 (as amended) and the NHCR.

Infant and Follow-on Formula

The rules on infant and follow-on formula are presently under review. BCAP is considering the implications of the provisions of the Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2016/127 as retained in UK law. This replaces The Infant Formula and Follow-on Formula (England) Regulations 2007, which have been repealed.

 

Marketers are advised to refer to the Commission Delegated Regulation along with other relevant food law when preparing ads. The ASA will have appropriate regard to it when applying the rules below.

 

13.8 Advertisements for infant formula are prohibited.

 

13.8 Advertisements for infant formula are prohibited.

 

13.8.1 Advertisements must not confuse between infant formula and follow-on formula.13.8.1 Advertisements must not confuse between infant formula and follow-on formula.

 

 

CAP Code section 15 will be amended as follows:

 

Existing wording

 

Revised wording

 

Infant and follow-on formula

These rules must be read in conjunction with the relevant legislation, including the Infant Formula and Follow-on Formula Regulations 2007 (as amended) and the NHCR.

Infant and follow-on formula

The rules on infant and follow-on formula are presently under review. CAP is considering the implications of the provisions of the Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2016/127 as retained in UK law. This replaces The Infant Formula and Follow-on Formula (England) Regulations 2007, which have been repealed.

 

Marketers are advised to refer to the Commission Delegated Regulation along with other relevant food law when preparing ads. The ASA will have appropriate regard to it when applying the rules below.

 

15.10 Except for those in a scientific publication or, for the purposes of trade before the retail stage, a publication of which the intended readers are not the general public, marketing communications for infant formula are prohibited.

 

15.10 Except for those in a scientific publication or, for the purposes of trade before the retail stage, a publication of which the intended readers are not the general public, marketing communications for infant formula are prohibited.
15.10.1 Marketing communications must not confuse between infant formula and follow-on formula.15.10.1 Marketing communications must not confuse between infant formula and follow-on formula.

 

 

Source: CAP

 

Note: This advice is given by the CAP Executive about non-broadcast advertising. It does not constitute legal advice. It does not bind CAP, CAP advisory panels or the ASA. CAP’s AdviceOnline entries provide guidance on interpreting the UK Code of Non-broadcast Advertising and Direct & Promotional Marketing.

 

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