An advert for baked beans which encouraged its viewers to bang on empty cans like miniature drums has been banned over worries that it might cause children to cut their hands.
The advert — which looks a lot like a straight rip-off of the vaguely irritating ‘cups’ song from the movie Pitch Perfect — showed actors drumming on empty Heinz cans to a musical accompaniment.
But after just nine viewers lodged complaints with the UKs Advertising Standards Agency, the advert has been banned from being broadcast.
The complainants said that the advert encouraged ‘unsafe practice’, with six of them believing that it could be dangerous for children to emulate.
Heinz responded by pointing out that it had posted video tutorials showing people how to safely hit the can, and never once showed anyone tapping anything other than an alleged ‘safe surface’, i.e, the top, bottom or sides.
But the ASA ruled that viewers were unlikely to be as good as the actors at switching the can over and spinning it round, saying: ‘The ad condoned and encouraged behaviour that prejudiced health or safety.’
‘Paarticularly given the manoeuvres required, it might still be possible that mistakes could be made with an empty can, which might include a hand or fingers being inserted into an open tin, with the associated risk of cuts,’ it went on to say.
The expensive commercial was finally banned because it was ‘likely to condone or encourage behaviour that could be
That means that the advert can’t be broadcast again in its current form, and that Heinz is not to make any future adverts that feature open cans being used to make music.
A Heinz spokesman said: ‘We believe this popular ad did not pose any safety risk and many fans were inspired to create their own video versions. Of course safety is our number one priority and our online tutorials also included tapping the can end as an extra precaution. Although we acknowledge the ASA decision the TV campaign is over and we have no plans to run it again.’
You could say the campaign has been canned. We’ll show ourselves out.