Pret a Manger is this week's highest profile victim to be shamed by the authoritarian overlords of our advertising standards watchdog, with the latter telling it to stop making so many claims about its "natural" foodstuffs when its bread is full of delicious, laboratory-produced E-numbers.
A pure food/safe eating pressure group made the claim about Pret's adverts, and in particular one boast on its web site, where the sandwich producer said it was on "...a mission to create handmade, natural food, avoiding the obscure chemicals, additives and preservatives common to so much of the 'prepared' and 'fast' food on the market today."
There was also some to-ing and fro-ing between the ASA and Pret about what is deemed baking and what is merely toasting, with the ASA believing that Pret's in-branch preparation of delivered frozen pastry dough and partially-cooked baguettes is indeed cooked enough on the premises to be described as baked.
The problem, though, was the claim about "natural food" that avoids using "obscure chemicals" in its manufacturing, which was deemed to be nonsense because the usual selection of E-numbers is to be found on the ingredients labels of its sandwiches thanks to the bread it uses. So no more hammering of the term "natural" from now on, says the ads police. [ASA via Metro]