Aldi under fire from ad watchdog

Aldi under fire from ad watchdog

Aldi has been ordered to pull a TV ad in the UK after rival Asda argued the spot misled consumers.

The UK's Advertising Watchdog upheld five complaints from Asda about Aldi's "Swap and Save" campaign. The push encouraged consumers to shop at the discounter and compare its prices with those at their regular store.

According to the ASA, Asda's objections included that the comparison was "selective" and the type of products included in it could not be verified. Asda also argued the period Aldi used to compare prices - 1 April 2013 to 26 May 2013 - was out of date and invalid for a "price-sensitive market". The ad ran in September and October.

Aldi defended the spot and was backed by Clearcast - the broadcaster-backed body that clears ads in the UK.

However, the ASA ruled the advert breached rules on misleading advertising, comparisons with competitors and on prices.

"The ad must not appear again in its current form. We told Aldi Stores Ltd to ensure that the basis for comparisons were made clear in their future ads and that they should be able to provide substantiation for any savings claims made on the basis of these comparisons," the ASA said.

"We also told them that, in order to make the comparison verifiable, they should amend the ad to include either a postal address to which viewers could write for full details of the comparison, including which products were included and at what prices, or a web address that linked directly to a page about the campaign that included such details or a postal address."