The Superintendency filed a lawsuit against Postobón for alleged misleading advertising



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These are the "Hit" commercials released in the media during the last two years under the motto "Choose Hit, the real fruit". According to the Superintendence of Industry and Commerce, the statement could violate the rights of the consumer, which is why he decided to open a formal investigation to the beverage company.

SIC brought charges to one of Colombia's largest beverage companies: Postobon. As you read in the document, known as The spectator, Red PaPaz filed a complaint as a result of the commercials "Hit" encouraging, in its opinion, "in a misleading way, the consumption of said drink in children and adolescents." The foregoing, according to the corporation, would be to the detriment of consumer status and the constitutional prevalence of children's rights over the rights of others.

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Since the beginning of 2018, Red PaPaz Corporation filed a complaint with the Superintendency of Industry and Commerce (SIC) against Postobón, claiming that its way of announcing soft drinks marked "Hit" was "misleading." After studying the documentation provided, the supervisory body decided to open a formal investigation that could bring a millionaire fine to the company.

The main challenge of Red PaPaz, according to the document, is that "the objective messages contained in the advertising of products & # 39; Hit & # 39; with the slogan & # 39; Hit, the true fruit & # 39; Hit is juice, that Hit is a true fruit, that Hit is healthy and that Hit is an ideal food for the lunchbox, that is, for the daily consumption of children they do not match the reality of the product, it is not true, adequate or accurate information ".

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To demonstrate that advertising would be misleading, the corporation brought to SIC a series of tests, including advertising tests, packaging samples, nutrient standards recommended by the Pan American Health Organization, technical concepts of packaging . two nutritionists and the result of a laboratory study that would demonstrate the high levels of sugars in soft drinks marked "Hit." All this, aiming to prove that & # 39; Hit & # 39; sells the idea that "it has beneficial nutritional characteristics for children and adolescents, which it does not have".

When SIC began investigating, it asked Postobón to support with phrases that appeared in the commercials, such as: "My mother knows I love fruits, so in my lunch box there is always & # 39; Hit & 39 ;." Because I like it, it strengthens me and it's what Mom loves. The company replied: "Since the expressions in question are purely and indisputably subjective statements, they do not require any technical or scientific support." In addition, he added that the nutrients of the product respond with the promise of sale.

In addition, in the course of the investigation, the control entity came across a new advantage: Postobon was paying prominent people or influencers $ 500,000 to share photos on their social networks with the #HitSiTieneFruta hashtag. According to the SIC expert's report, the campaign ensured that those who were part of this "all you have to do is share a link that contains information that clarifies the rumors about the ingredients of & # 39; Hit & # 39; ".

In addition, Postobon added that the nutrients of the product respond with the promise of sale and clarified: "Keep in mind that it is not clear that fruit soda is better than the fruits themselves or that 100% of this ingredient is made, but within the list of possibilities in the market, the fruit drink "Hit" turns out to be nutritionally an option, best if you want, for your manufacturer. "

The SIC did not accept that the researchers used the superlative "the best" because it does not clarify the quality that is said to be better and there is "no support that demonstrates that its nutritional value is superior to the others". Therefore, consider the control entity, the use of this statement in advertising "would lack clarity, precision, sufficiency" and other precepts, which would be violating consumer status.

Carolina Piñeros, director of Red PaPaz, said in a statement: "These positions are an important milestone in defending the rights of children and adolescents as consumers. Many ultraprocessed products betray their marketing and advertising and the state has the obligation to protect the prevailing rights of our children under the age of 18. "

He added, "Our proposal is for these products to have labels that tell us if they are rich in sugar, sodium, or saturated fats, as we proposed in Bill 214 of 2018 or Junk Food Act, and ideally discard junk food advertising from as these products are largely responsible for the rising rates of malnutrition, overweight, and obesity in this population. "

The commercials mentioned in the collections are as follows:

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