ASA in disarray over recycling claims

Computer manufacturer ICL (UK) and Norwich Union have been rapped on the knuckles by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) over claims concerning product recyclability. But the ASA's verdicts have left its policy on recycling claims in some confusion.

The ASA's first significant ruling in this area was made early in 1991, when it was asked to adjudicate on an advertisement in which hamburger chain McDonald's stated that its foam packaging was "fully recyclable". Upholding a complaint about the claim, the ASA said that "it was misleading to refer to the advantages of materials being recycled if the advertisers themselves were not engaged in recycling the material" (ENDS Report 195, pp 20-21)

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