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Eveready South Africa welcomes ASA ruling

Eveready South Africa welcomes the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) decision to uphold its complaints relating to Duracell’s “10 x longer” claims.

Following its investigation into the testing claims, statements made in advertising small print, Eveready South Africa (Eveready) referred a recent Duracell advertising campaign to the ASA to consider whether it breached five codes within the South African advertising codes of practice: honesty, substantiation, misleading claims, disparagement, comparative advertising.

 The ASA has ruled that the Duracell claim that its batteries “lasts up to 10 times longer” than ordinary zinc batteries breached the Advertising Code by misleading consumers and is in contravention of Clause 4.2.1 of Section II of the Code.

Read the full ruling on the ASA website here:

 “While we are pleased that the ASA upheld our complaints, this was not about a win for Eveready but rather a win for the consumers who have repeatedly been misled by the exaggerated claims of Duracell in the past and most recent advertising campaign. Its exaggerated claims were found to be misleading in December 2006 by ASA. However, they continued to use such claims from time to time disregarding the ruling by ASA,” remarks Eveready Managing Director, Avijit Das. “An additional concern with its advertising campaign was that testing compared an alkaline battery to a zinc battery – two different batteries designed for different uses. And, that it did not use the International Electrotechnical Commission standard which has been adopted by SABS to test its product against other brands’ products.”

 Within in the ruling, it states that Duracell relied on “unstandardized testing protocols to exploit consumer-credibility and exaggerate the superiority of its products.”

 In December 2006 the ASA found Duracell in breach of similar codes when it was unable to substantiate a claim of lasting “up to six times longer than ordinary zinc carbon batteries.”

 “We understand our industry, its standards and the performance of products on the market, and we would like the consumer to make a choice based on realistic claims and not misleading ones ,” adds Das. “Eveready is the leading zinc carbon battery manufacturer in South Africa, with 81.6% of the market. Competition is healthy, but it shouldn’t be at the expense of misleading the consumer.”