Supermarket Iceland’s Christmas ad campaign has been banned from TV because it has fallen foul of political advertising rules.
The clip focuses on a little girl and her friend Rang-Tan, an orangutan who comes to stay after its rainforest home is destroyed by humans in order to create palm oil.
The adorable monkey gets upset when he finds a hair product bottle containing palm oil. In turn, he’s haunted by flashbacks to diggers tearing through forests and so his little friend comforts him.
After the cartoon finished, Iceland paid tribute to the 25 orangutans that are killed per day as part of this destruction, and the vow that palm oil will not be present in their in-store products.
The supermarket has became the first major UK retailer to undertake removing palm oil from its own-brand products.
Deforestation across South East Asia due to palm oil farming has led to orangutan populations being classified as critically endangered.
Clearcast, the watchdog responsible for vetting television adverts, said that the advert had breached rules on political advertising.
Iceland’s founder, Malcolm Walker, told the Guardian: “This was a film that Greenpeace made with a voiceover by Emma Thompson.
“We got permission to use it and take off the Greenpeace logo and use it as the Iceland Christmas ad. It would have blown the John Lewis ad out of the window. It was so emotional.”
The UN has warned that continued loss of habitats around the world is a major threat to the survival of humanity. Palm oils are found in numerous products, from chocolate to shampoos and there are growing calls globally to clearly label products so that consumers can make better informed decisions.
The company also tweeted, “You won’t see our Christmas advert on TV this year, because it was banned. But we want to share Rang-tan’s story with you… Will you help us share the story?”
You won’t see our Christmas advert on TV this year, because it was banned. But we want to share Rang-tan’s story with you… ? ?
Will you help us share the story?https://t.co/P8H61t6lWu
— Iceland Foods ❄️ (@IcelandFoods) November 9, 2018
As the video started making the rounds online, it quickly gained traction due to its banned nature and soon went viral, with many people expressing concern as to why it was banned in the first place, while others started petitioning for the ad to be seen on TV screens across the Christmas period.
(Articles reflect the views of the author, and not necessarily those of Luke Nash-Jones, The Red Pill Factory, or Make Britain Great Again.)