ASA Ruling on Fuel Station Ltd
Fuel Station Ltd
25 May 2016
Internet (social networking)
Health and beauty
Number of complaints:
A tweet from Fuel Station (a company that delivered meals) on their @FuelStation_Twitter feed seen on 23 January 2016, stated “Saturday night & we’re getting photos of how our #FuelWarriors are prepped & ready for the weekend!”. Above this was an image of the food in its packaging, which featured text that stated “#EatFitBeFit Fuel Station …”. The packaging also featured an image that looked similar to a fuel gauge.
The complainant challenged the claim “#EatFitBeFit”, which as a general reference to the benefits of the product for overall good health or health related well-being must be accompanied by a specific authorised health claim.
CAP Code (Edition 12)
Fuel Station Ltd stated that the claim “#EatFitBeFit” was a slogan to encourage people to eat healthier. They believed that it was not a general health claim, but rather suggested that a person’s health and fitness levels were affected by what they ate and therefore, a generalisation that health, fitness and diet were directly linked.
The CAP Code defined a health claim as any claim that stated, suggested or implied that a relationship existed between a food category, a food or one of its constituents and health. According to EC Regulation 1924/2006 on nutrition and health claims made on foods (the Regulation) which was reflected in the CAP Code, only health claims which appeared on the list of authorised health claims (the EU Register) were permitted in marketing communications. References to general benefits of a nutrient or food for overall good health or health related well-being were acceptable only if accompanied by a specific authorised health claim.
In the context of a Twitter page for a company called Fuel Station which sold ready prepared meals, we considered that the claim "#EatFitBeFit" would be understood as a reference to a general benefit of the food for overall good health or health related well-being, because consumers would understand the claims to mean that the meals would help people become "fit" and therefore that they would be beneficial to their health. Because the general health claim "#EatFitBeFit" was not accompanied by a specific authorised health claim, we concluded that the ad breached the Code.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rule 15.2 (Food, food supplements and associated health or nutrition claims).
The ad must not appear in its current form. We told Fuel Station Ltd not to make claims for general, non-specific health benefits unless those claims were accompanied by a relevant, authorised health claim.