Tamper proof bread
A late 2019 tweet from Albany bread cited in the ARB ruling.
  • Baker Albany has been ordered to remove the claim that its bread packaging is "tamper proof".
  • Consumers are likely to think that means nobody could have messed with their bread, which is not true, the Advertising Regulatory Board ruled in a complaint by a competitor.
  • After first claiming roughly that, Albany's parent company Tiger Brands later said the seal was actually intended to make it possible to see if tampering had taken place.
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Baker Albany has been ordered to withdraw its claim of packaging that makes its bread "tamper proof", which is likely to be misleading, by the Advertising Regulatory Board (ARB).

Albany introduced the claim on its packaging in 2019, using an image of a lock along with the words "tamper proof seal" on its range of bread, to show its bread is "laser sealed".

Initially the packaging was marketed as a way to ensure bread could not be interfered with from the time it left the bakery to arrival at consumer homes.

But when competitor company Premier – which makes Blue Ribbon bread – challenged Albany's parent company Tiger Brands about that claim, Tiger said the idea was actually to allow consumers to see if bread had been tampered with, after the fact.

"Any customer who realises that the "TAMPER POOF SEAL" is no longer intact has the right to choose a different bread, because he/she can assume that the damaged packaging indicates prior tampering," the ABR said of Tiger Brands' argument.

But customers could easily interpret the seal as having a "preventative purpose", the ABR said, similar to child proof medicine, and that is "not what the packaging appears to do"; it may be tamper evident, but is not tamper safe.

Nor did it buy Tiger's assertion that proof of tampering, rather than proof against tampering, had been the intent of the new bread packaging.

Combined with the likelihood that people do not closely scrutinise their bread packaging before paying, the ARB said, claiming Albany to be tamper proof is "at best, ambiguous, and therefore likely to mislead".

(Compiled by Phillip de Wet)

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