I've now stopped doing handstands long enough to blog about this!
It seems the Advertising Standards Authority agreed with me:
In the TV ad, created by Euro RSCG, a voice over said: "Did you know eight out of 10 toddlers aren't getting enough iron?".
The ad showed a woman giving her child a giant 12-litre cup of milk before the voice-over continued: “It’s not surprising – meeting 50% of their needs would mean drinking 12 litres of cow’s milk per day, or just two beakers of Cow & Gate Complete Care Growing Up Milk, as part of a varied diet helping to support brain development, strong bones and teeth, healthy growth.”
Accompanying on-screen text read: “Recommended daily intake of iron = 6.9mg from a variety of iron-rich foods which may include Growing Up Milk.” Three people challenged whether the claim that “eight out of 10 toddlers aren’t getting enough iron” could be substantiated.; the Advertising Standards Association ruled it could not.
The ASA said it received expert advice that there was no recommended daily allowance (RDA) of iron for toddlers and that, for food labelling purposes, the value of iron recommended for children between the ages of one and three years was set at 6mg. Iron absorption was regulated at intestinal levels and different amounts of iron were absorbed from the diet depending on the requirements of the body.
The study by Nutricia examined the diet itself, and not the subsequent absorption of iron contained within that diet, and so could not conclude that the individual children in the study were not getting enough iron, the ASA was told.
The ASA found that the figure 6.9 mg was an average recommendation for different aged and shaped toddlers, not the amount of daily iron recommended as being necessary for preventing development problems associated with iron deficiency in individual toddlers, before concluding the ad was likely to mislead.
The ad breached CAP TV Advertising Standards Code rules 5.1.1, misleading advertising, and 5.2.1, evidence. The ASA said it should not be broadcast again in its current form.