Repeat of 1950s egg advert bannedClaim it does not comply with balanced diet rules

20 June 2007

Re-runs of a well-known television commercial from the 1950s which instructed viewers to 'Go to work on an egg' have been banned by standards watchdogs because they do not encourage a balanced diet.

The Egg Information Service, set up by the industry to provide information and answer questions about eggs, had wanted to screen the advert, which featured legendary comedian Tony Hancock, to mark its 50th birthday.

But the Broadcast Advertising Clearance Centre (BACC), which regulates advertising standards and practice, blocked screening of the adverts on the grounds that they did not comply with Ofcom rules about promoting a varied diet.

Fruit juice and toast

BACC spokesman Kristoffer Hammer said it was not a question of whether an egg a day would cause any harm, but that it should be served with fruit juice or toast.

He said on GMTV this morning: 'We are not questioning the effect it would have on your health.

'Our role is to ensure that advertising that goes on television is in compliance with the act. It's quite clear from the act that they should be presented as part of a balanced diet.'

British Egg Information Service spokeswoman Amanda Cryer told BBC Online: 'We have been shocked by this ruling as eggs are a healthy, natural food which are recommended by nutritionists.

'What's more, there are no restrictions on the number of eggs people can eat, which was recently confirmed by the Food Standards Agency, and between five and seven eggs a week would be totally acceptable for most people.

'In addition, many other advertisers clearly promote their products to be eaten every day such as breakfast cereals so we are very surprised that eggs have been singled out in this way.'

The Press Association, All Rights Reserved.