A recent customer complaint about a chicken fillet has been upheld by the Advertising Standards Board (ASB).
The case was upheld because the ASB found that the public perception of a fillet is that it is a whole piece of meat with no bone and not made from processed meat.
It was found that the fillet in question was not a whole fillet, and as such cannot be called a fillet.
Unfortunately there was no clear definition of chicken fillet in the Food Standards Code or Cuts of Chicken Meat from the Australian Chicken Meat Federation, so the ASB had to rely on what the public believes.
The company has been found to be using false advertising and is required to change the name of the product and make no reference to the word “fillet”. The change will be effective across all stores and the website by the end of July.
If the complaint had been made to Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) instead of the ASB, there would have been potentially massive fines as well as the name change requirement.
This case really highlights the absolute importance of a business making sure that it uses the right words to describe products on both labelling and in advertising. There are penalties, both financial and to reputation, if a business does it wrong, especially if it is done deliberately.