The carbonating drinks machine manufacturer SodaStream has decided to run 'black ads' in response to a regulator ruling that its £11m Christmas advertising campaign 'denigrated' the bottled drinks industry.
Clearcast is the organisation used by broadcasters to ensure that any advertisements they run are compliant with the Broadcasting Committee of Advertising Practice (BCAP) TV Advertising Standards Code.
The advertisement, available to view on YouTube, shows regular bottled soda drinks exploding every time a SodaStream machine is used. It includes the slogan "with SodaStream you can save 2,000 bottles a year".
The slogan references the fact that with SodaStream you reuse glass bottles, instead of purchasing new plastic bottles.
Clearcast decided to ban the ad, despite the fact that it had successfully aired in the US, Australia and in Sweden.
In a statement the regulator said: "(We) decided that the ad could be seen to tell people not to go to supermarkets and buy soft drinks, instead to help save the environment by buying a SodaStream. We thought it was denigration of the bottled drinks market."
SodaStream have hit back, suggesting they may challenge the Clearcast ruling in court.
"This decision is absurd. We have neither named nor disparaged any of our competitors in the industry and cannot see how this makes any sense," said Fiona Hope, the managing director of SodaStream in the UK.
"We will continue to fight this decision with Clearcast and will push to reverse this decision," she added.
The decision to ban the advert has been criticised by some who feel that Clearcast is 'in the pocket' of the multi-billion dollar carbonated drink manufacturers.
Watch the video and let us know what you think:
Claire Beale on Advertising: Fizz is forced out of Soda Stream ads (The Independent)