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Butcher’s ad about processing mother-in-law meat not in breach of Advertising Standards Authority rules

A complaint was made to the Advertising Standards Authority but the watchdog did not find grounds to proceed. Photo / 123rf The...

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A complaint was made to the Advertising Standards Authority but the watchdog did not find grounds to proceed. Photo / 123rf

The Advertisings Standards Authority (ASA) has found no grounds to proceed with a complaint against a radio ad for a local Wairarapa butcher which stated that they could even process mother-in-law meat.

The radio ad for Scottys Meats mentioned that the butcher can process a variety of meats, including home-kill, farm-kill, wild game and “maybe your mother-in-law too”.

A complainant wrote to the ASA that the ad trivialised violence against women.

“Making a ‘joke’ about killing women minimises and normalises violence against women, and is offensive,” the complaint stated.

ASA has found no grounds to proceed with the complaint but did say it found the ad to be “in poor taste” and “playing to the outdated stereotype that mothers-in-law are people that families want to get rid of”.

The ASA’s chair also said that advertisers need to be careful with their use of language and imagery.

However, the advertising watchdog did not uphold the complaint. The chair said the likely consumer takeout of the advertisement was that Scottys Meats “are butchers licensed to process meat from a range of sources”.

In the decision, the watchdog said the chair believed the ad would be recognised as an attempt at humour by most radio listeners.

The chair said taking into account the context, medium, audience and product meant the
concept of linking a butcher service with processing a body of a deceased mother-in-law
was “so ridiculous, consumers would not consider the outdated humour encouraged or
condoned actual violence towards women”.



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