business news in context, analysis with attitude

The Financial Times reports that in the UK, the Advertising Standards Authority (ADA) has ruled in favor of Tesco in a complaint that was filed against the retailer by rival Sainsbury.

According to the story, "Sainsbury had challenged Tesco’s claim, made under its Price Promise scheme, that 'You won’t lose out on big brands, own-label or fresh food.' Sainsbury alleged this was misleading in relation to own-label and fresh food, as important product attributes, such as animal welfare and the provenance of ingredients, had not been taken into account."

The ADA said that the fine print in Tesco's advertising acknowledged these differences, and incorporated them into its comparisons.

“We’re disappointed that the ASA couldn’t challenge Tesco’s view that customers don’t care all that much about where their food comes from or how it is produced,” said Mike Coupe, Sainsbury’s commercial director. (No relation to the Content Guy, at least that we know of.) Sainsbury said that it will launch a new ad campaign that will also draw comparisons, and will emphasize the provenance of its products.
KC's View:
It sounds like Tesco won on a technicality. (Sainsbury would probably agree with that analysis. Tesco, not so much.)

But I have to say that the older I get and the more I do this, the more it seems important to know where products come from and how they are produced. Information is important. You can choose to pay attention, or not. So I kind of like the idea that Sainsbury is going to center an ad campaign on the subject of product provenance - I like it when companies decide to talk about values, and not just value.