IT’S NOT OFFENSIVE, according to Britain’s Advertising Standards Authority, but it is misleading.
More than 370 people complained about the ad when it was first aired, with most of them (252 in fact) objecting to the farmer and his buddies being in the nip, saying it was offensive or inappropriate for a younger audience.
The remaining complaints were about the origins of the product. The ad proclaimed that Richmond Ham was “Britain’s only ham made with 100% natural ingredients”. However, some viewers felt that the claim was misleading because other local producers also made similar products, and the company which makes the ham (Kerry Group) is in fact Irish.
The Richmond Ham website also says that the meat used us prepared “deep in the heart of Co. Wicklow”.
The ASA ruled that the ad was not sexual in tone, and that it didn’t contain anything that might harm or distress children. However the complaints about the origin of the ham was upheld, because consumers would probably assume that the product was British (when we all know now that it comes from “deep in the heart of Wicklow”).
To make a long story short, the ad will never be shown again. But you can watch it on YouTube if you fancy looking at some bacon butties*.