Kevin The Carrot Ad Banned After Just One Complaint

Think back a few months to the cute little Aldi Christmas adverts featuring Kevin the Carrot; remember him?

Adorable, isn't he? Loved by one and all - well, not quite, because one (yes, just one) person found our Kev so offensive they went and put in a complaint about the advert with the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA). And, as a result, Aldi have been told they can no longer air it.

The festive ad featured little Kev say "I see dead parsnips", in a nod to movie The Sixth Sense, the narrator then states:

"Kevin was feeling a little bit tense.
He thought there were spirits. He had a sixth sense.
As it turned out his instincts were right.
There were a few spirits that cold Christmas night.
Award-winning bottles for raising a toast
And one frightened carrot had just seen a ghost."

While the narrator spoke, bottles of Aldi's cheap as chips spirits were displayed on-screen with prices. The ad ends with Kevin on his arse (do carrots have arses?) after getting a fright from another little carrot wearing a white sheet. All very festive and very sweet, right?

Credit: Aldi
Credit: Aldi

Except, according to the complaint, the cutesiness of the advert could actually have attracted kids to alcohol. Off the back of the complaint, the ASA launched an investigation into the ad and found that it was likely to have 'strong appeal' to children under the age of 18.

However, Aldi said as the advert was attempting to flog booze, it was scheduled in accordance with guidelines, meaning it wouldn't have been shown on TV between shows that would be likely to appeal to kids.

But the ASA ruled in favour of the complainant. An ASA spokesman told the Blackpool Gazette: "We considered that Kevin the Carrot appeared to be childlike and had a high-pitched voice, similar to that of a young child.

"Furthermore, we understood Kevin was sold as a soft toy during the Christmas period and was popular amongst under-18-year-olds, particularly young children.

Credit: Aldi
Credit: Aldi

"We therefore considered that Kevin was likely to have strong appeal to audiences under the age of 18."

He continued: "Although the content of the dialogue and poem - which made use of a pun on 'spirits' - was not typical content for children, we considered the tone was reminiscent of a children's story, therefore it was likely to resonate with and strongly appeal to younger children.

"Furthermore, we considered the ending of the ad showing Kevin being frightened by another character dressed-up as a ghost would be particularly funny for younger children and consequently, contributed to the overall effect of the ad having strong appeal to under-18s.

"Because of that, we considered the ad was likely to appeal strongly to people under18 and given that it was promoting alcohol, we concluded was irresponsible."

He added: "The ad must not appear again in its current form.

"We told Aldi that their future ads for alcohol must not be likely to appeal strongly to people under 18 years of age."

Featured Image Credit: Aldi

Claire Reid

Claire Reid is a journalist at LADbible. Claire graduated from Liverpool John Moores University with a BA in journalism. She’s previously worked at Trinity Mirror. Since joining LADbible, Claire has worked on pieces for the UOKM8? mental health campaign, the Yemen crisis, life in the Calais Jungle as well as a profile of a man who is turning himself into a cyborg.

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