CSE welcomes Advertisement Standards Council of India decision on misleading poultry industry advertisement featuring Sania Mirza

May 21, 2018

Asks the tennis star, once again, to publicly distance herself from the advertisement 

  • Advertisement Standards Council of India (ASCI) says poultry industry advertisement by All India Poultry Development and Services Private Limited is misleading
  • Advertisement had falsely claimed the poultry sector is not misusing antibiotics. It had also misused and misrepresented the results of a 2014 CSE study on antibiotic residues in chicken
  • ASCI says by mentioning CSE study results, the advertisement contravened the Code on “Truthful & Honest Representation”
  • Directs the advertiser to withdraw or modify the advertisement by May 23, 2018
  • “Mirza is a youth icon – she must recognize the public health threat that antibiotic misuse in food animals poses, and refrain from associating herself with such fabrications of the truth”: says CSE 

New Delhi, May 21, 2018:Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) has welcomed the recent decision of the Advertisement Standards Council of India (ASCI) which has said the poultry industry advertisement featuring tennis legend Sania Mirza was misleading by facts, exaggeration and ambiguity. CSE has once again called on Mirza to distance herself from the advertisement in the interest of public health (visit www.cseindia.org to see CSE’s missive to SaniaMirza). 

It may be noted here that the All India Poultry Development and Services Private Limited (AIPDSPL) had issued an advertisement on February 27, 2018, on the front page of a leading national daily. The advertisement had completely misrepresented the ground reality by saying the poultry sector is not misusing antibiotics. It had also misused and misrepresented the results of a CSE study of 2014 on antibiotic residues in chicken. (Read the earlier CSE press release here:

The Advertising Standards Council has directed AIPDSPL to withdraw or modify the advertisement by May 23, 2018. The complaint against the advertisement was filed by Humane Society International, India. The ASCI has decided that by mentioning the CSE study results, the advertisement contravened Chapter 1.3 of its code on “Truthful & Honest Representation”.  

“We are happy with the decision by ASCI. It reaffirms what we had categorically saidthat the advertisement was misleading the people of this country. It was wrong in telling that the poultry sector is not misusing antibiotics, which is absolutely different from the ground reality,” says Chandra Bhushan, deputy director general, CSE. 

In the wake of this decision, CSE has once again asked Mirza, who is also an icon for India’s young people, to disassociate herself from this misleading advertisement as indiscriminate antibiotic use adds to growing antibiotic resistance, which is a huge public health threat. 

“Earlier, we had written to Ms Mirza apprising her about the malpractice of antibiotic misuse in poultry sector and the libelous nature of this advertisement. As a responsible role model, we urged her to publicly disassociate herself from this advertisement. We once again ask her to consider doing so,”says Amit Khurana, senior programme manager, food safety and toxins, CSE. 

Important links on this issue: 

Links to CSE studies:  

 

For interviews and other assistance, please contact: PARUL TEWARI, The CSE Media Resource Centre, parul@cseindia.org / 9891838367.