Organic Trade Board rapped for welfare claims

An organisation set up to promote organic farming has been banned from running an advert which made misleading claims about animal welfare.

The magazine ad, run by the Organic Trade Board, featured a man and his son dressed in a pantomime cow costume and was headlined “We love organic because we care about animals.”

Text beneath the headline included the line: “Organic means fewer drugs or antibiotics, it also means better conditions for animals so they get to thrive and grow more naturally.”

A farmer and an agricultural surveyor complained to the Advertising Standards Authority about the claims.

They challenged whether the ad was misleading in implying animals farmed in a non-organic way experienced lower welfare standards than those that were organically farmed.

The ASA reviewed the advert and ruled it was misleading and must not appear in its current form again.

“We considered that the claim suggested that in all cases, organically farmed animals experienced better animal welfare conditions compared to non-organically farmed animals,” it said.

“Whilst we noted that the evidence provided by OTB showed that organically farmed animals experienced high animal welfare conditions, we did not consider that it showed that in all cases, organically farmed animals experienced better conditions than non-organically farmed animals.”

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