Peters & Peters

ASA finds that Charles Tyrwhitt’s claims of carbon neutrality were not sufficiently clear to consumers

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Key facts:

A paid-for Facebook ad for Charles Tyrwhitt, featured an image of a shirt and included the words “We’re proud to be a Carbon Neutral business”. The ASA investigated whether the ad misled consumers because it failed to make clear the basis of the claim that the company was a “Carbon Neutral business”.

In response to the investigation, Charles Tyrwhitt said that its claims to carbon neutrality were factually correct. It said that its claims were supported by a report obtained through a partnership with the sustainability consultancy Planet Mark and under the guidelines of PAS2060, which is the specification published by the British Standards Institution detailing how companies should demonstrate carbon neutrality.

The ASA found that the advert was misleading. The CAP Code states that the basis of environmental claims must be clear and that unqualified claims may mislead if material information is omitted. The ASA thought that consumers seeing the advert would believe that buying a Charles Tyrwhitt shirt would have a net neutral impact on carbon emissions and climate change. However, the advert did not contain any information about the basis of the company’s carbon neutral claims.

The ASA told Charles Tyrwhitt that the advert must not appear again in the form complained about. It also told the company to ensure that the basis of any future environmental claims was made clear.

Source(s):

ASA ruling

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