The Consumer Ombudsman’s Guidelines on the Use of Environmental and Ethical Claims in Marketing

These guidelines will be updated!

1. Introduction

1.1 Background and objective

The objective of these Guidelines is to prevent consumers from being misled and to influence traders to comply with the Marketing Control Act regarding ethical and environmental marketing.

To enable consumers to make conscious and informed decisions, it is important that the trader provide the consumer with correct and instructive information about the product and its ethical and environmental superiority. These Guidelines shall contribute to providing the trader with knowledge of the requirements upon which the Consumer Ombudsman bases its assessment of whether ethical and environmental claims in marketing are in compliance with the Marketing Control Act. Furthermore, the Guidelines shall ensure consistency and equality in the Consumer Ombudsman’s case handling procedures, in addition to being a link in the information passed down to traders.

1.2 The Guidelines’ nature and applicability

The Guidelines express how the Consumer Ombudsman will enforce the Marketing Control Act regarding ethical and environmental marketing directed towards consumers. Any particular requirements for marketing or the properties, labelling etc. of products, which are specified in special legislation, will fall outside the scope of these Guidelines.

These Guidelines are not a regulation and do not give an exhaustive presentation.

The examples given throughout these Guidelines are meant as practical guides to traders and consumers. It is emphasised that the examples are intended merely as illustrations of the positions taken, and that these must not be perceived as clear guidelines for what is permitted and what is not. The determining factor for the Consumer Ombudsman’s assessment of any marketing measure will always be the overall impression that the measure is likely to give to the consumer.

Traders who are in doubt as to whether their marketing is in compliance with the Marketing Control Act may contact the Consumer Ombudsman for guidance. While the Consumer Ombudsman does not have the opportunity to pre-approve marketing, it may provide guidance concerning which requirements apply.[1]

1.3 Definitions and use of concepts

In these Guidelines, product means all goods and services, including immovable property, rights and obligations.[2]

By environmental and ethical claims is meant the use of statements, information, symbols, images, labelling systems and so on in marketing which give the impression that a product has ethical or environmental properties, or that a business takes special ethical or environmental considerations.

In the Consumer Ombudsman’s view, wherever shall and must are used in the Guidelines, these indicate unambiguous marketing requirements.

Traders must assume that the same requirements will apply to their own marketing, unless they can prove in any particular case that special conditions call for another solution for that particular company or industry. Any use of should is an expression of a recommendation. Though the Consumer Ombudsman has not taken a position concerning whether it will in all cases be in conflict with the law not to follow such a recommendation, these cases may easily be judged as misleading.

1.4 Legal basis

These Guidelines are developed with basis in the Marketing Control Act,[3] primarily sections 6, 7 and 8. Section 2 is also mentioned.

Unfair marketing is prohibited; cf. MCA section 6, first paragraph. The regulation on unfair commercial practices, given pursuant to section 6, fifth paragraph of the MCA, states instances that will always be considered as unfair and thus prohibited. This so-called “blacklist” follows from Appendix 1 of the Unfair Commercial Practices Directive. The following points in section 1 of the regulation will be of particular interest regarding ethical and environmental marketing:

  1. Claiming to be a signatory to a code of conduct when the trader is
  2. Displaying a trust mark, quality mark or equivalent without having obtained the necessary
  3. Claiming that a code of conduct has an endorsement from a public or other body which it does not
  4. Claiming that a trader (including his commercial practices) or a product has been approved, endorsed or authorised by a public or private body when he/it has not or making such a claim without complying with the terms of the approval, endorsement or

Marketing shall always be considered unfair and prohibited if it is misleading according to MCA section 7. Whether marketing is misleading depends on whether it contains false information, or if it is otherwise likely to mislead consumers; cf. section 7, first paragraph, letters a–h.

Of particular importance in this context are MCA section 7, first paragraph, letters a and b, concerning such topics as the nature and main characteris- tics of the service/product.

Misleading omissions in marketing as mentioned in MCA section 8 are unfair and prohibited; cf. MCA section 6, fourth cf. first paragraph.

Misleading omissions occur if the marketing omits or hides material information that the consumers need to take a transactional decision, or the information is presented in an unclear, unintelligible, ambiguous or untimely manner; cf. section 8, first paragraph, first sentence.

In the assessment of whether information has been omitted, assessments of space or time limitations of the media used shall be taken into consider- ation, along with any measures taken by the trader to make the informa- tion available to consumers by other means; cf. section 8, first paragraph, second point. Regardless, the trader shall ensure that the consumer gets a rightful impression of the offer or service/product, so that insufficient information is not given, and section 8, first paragraph, second point does not exempt the trader from the duty to inform the consumer of significant restrictions on the offer.[4] Incomplete information on what is implied by ethical and environmental claims used in marketing may in the Consumer Ombudsman’s view be seen as a misleading omission in conflict with MCA section 8.

A common term in sections 7 and 8 is that the marketing must be likely to cause the average consumer to take a transactional decision that he would not have taken otherwise.

According to the general provision in MCA section 6, second paragraph, marketing is unfair and prohibited if it is contrary to the requirements of professional diligence towards consumers, and is likely to materially distort their economic behaviour such that they reach decisions they would otherwise not have reached; cf. section 6, first paragraph.

Marketing must not be in conflict with good marketing practice; cf. MCA section 2, first paragraph. In the assessment of this, emphasis is placed on whether the marketing offends any general ethical or moral perceptions, or whether it uses offensive means. It follows from the preparatory works that environmental argumentation may be affected by section 2, first paragraph and the concept of “good marketing practice” [5].

Several international guidelines and self-regulations have been developed for the use of environmental claims in marketing. In 2006, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) published its “Consolidated ICC Code of Advertising and Marketing Communication Practice”. [6]  This code gathers several ICC codes, including the “International Code of Environmental Advertising”, published in 2001. It also incorporates the ISO’s international standard for self-declared environmental claims (ISO 14021:1999). The EU Commission has also published official “Guidelines for Making and Assessing Environmental Claims”, Report No. 67/94/22/1/00281 from December 2000.

1.5 Particulars on sanctions

The Marketing Control Act, section 39, cf. sections 40 and 41, give the Consumer Ombudsman and Market Council legal authority to make decisions concerning prohibitions and orders towards actions that are in conflict with the Marketing Control Act, chapters 1-5, including sections 2, 6, 7, 8 and 10, and regulations introduced pursuant to these provisions. As a main rule, enforcement penalties shall be fixed in connection with decisions concerning prohibitions and orders, according to section 42.

1.6 Relationship to previous practice

The Market Council and Consumer Ombudsman’s practice under the previous Marketing Control Act has been reviewed and assessed according to the new Marketing Control Act and the Unfair Commercial Practices Directive. It is assumed that the main features of the practice concerning ethical and environmental marketing under the previous Act may be continued. In the preparatory works, it is stated that the new Marketing Control Act’s section 7 on misleading actions and section 8 on misleading omissions are continuations of the prohibitions against misleading and insufficient guidance in sections 2 and 3 of the previous Marketing Control Act regarding practice towards the consumer. [7]

2. General section

2.1 Relationship to other points in the Guidelines

This point addresses the general requirements that apply for the use of environmental and ethical claims in marketing. In addition, particular requirements are stated for environmental claims in point 3, ethical claims in point 4, market profile in point 5 and the use of labelling systems in point 6.

2.2 Claims must be documentable

The use of ethical or environmental argumentation will often occur in the form of claims about products or their properties.

All claims used in marketing must be documentable.

Documentation verifying that claims are correct shall be available from the advertiser when the marketing occurs.

For the documentation to be seen as having sufficient validity, it is usually required that the claims can be verified by statements or research done by neutral authorities with recognised professional competence. This entails that research done by the producer or the company marketing the product must be assessed by a neutral authority, or it must be otherwise confirmed that the research has been carried out correctly and that the assessment of the results can be defended from a purely professional viewpoint.[8]

2.3 Clear and balanced presentation of message

The marketing message must be clear and balanced.

It must emerge clearly what aspects of the product the ethical or environmental claims refer to, including the properties of the product to which the claims apply, and whether the claims apply to the whole product or parts of it.

Example: A package of napkins may not be labelled as environmentally friendly and appear as though produced from recycled paper if only the packaging is made from recycled paper.

Example: The whole product may not be marketed as though it can be recycled if only some of its raw materials can be recycled.

Example: A product may not be marketed with general, vague expressions such as “good for the world”. If a trader wishes to draw attention to the fact that the company has acceptable or good labour conditions, it should highlight the concrete factors that distinguish its labour conditions from that of other companies.

Ethical or environmental claims may not be vague or unclear. On the contrary, they should be framed in such a way that they can immediately be understood by the consumers.

Example: The term “sustainable” has a somewhat vague meaning and it will be difficult for consumers to immediately understand what is meant by it. It may therefore be misleading to market a product as “sustainable”.

Examples of other concepts that are unclear and uninformative to the consumer are “clean”, “climate-friendly”, “green” and “fair”.

Claims that are ambiguous and can be understood in several ways will easily be misleading if they are used without further specification. These specifications must be clear, unambiguous and easily legible. They must also be given in immediate connection to the claim.

Traders may not use exaggerations about the properties or environmental influence of the company, service or product.

Claims concerning factors or requirements that are established by law, such as prohibitions against the use of certain substances in a product, may not be used independently in marketing.

Example: It will be misleading to market a deodorant spray as “CFC free” since this is a requirement for all equivalent products.

Example: It will be misleading to highlight an electronics shop as environmentally conscious because it accepts electronic waste, when this a requirement stated in the WEEE regulation.

2.4 Techniques that influence emotions, conscience etc.

Techniques which manipulate consumers’ emotions or conscience may not be used in marketing.[9] Marketing shall not be designed in such a way as to take advantage of the consumer’s concern for the environment, or take advantage of any lacking knowledge about the environment or ethical issues.

Examples of claims that may be seen as unfair towards the consumers: ”Drink coffee with a better conscience”

”Think of the polar bears: buy energy-efficient insulation”

2.5 The overall impression is the deciding factor

It is important that any marketing give a balanced and correct overall impression of the product or company being marketed. The marketing approach is assessed on the overall impression that it is likely to give the consumer.

Statements and visual means such as images, sounds, symbols, colours and so on may following an overall assessment give an impression that the product or company is ethically or environmentally superior.

The way in which ethical and environmental marketing is communicated, including what media are used and in what context the claims are made, may also influence the overall impression the approach is likely to give the consumer.

The concern for the consumer will as a rule come to the forefront more for marketing that is aimed directly at the consumer, such as advertisements and billboards, than for information given in a more neutral way, such as on packaging or in information materials.

2.6 Information about products or companies

The trader should provide as good information as possible about the marketed properties or advantages in advertisements, on packaging and in information materials such as their own websites.

If complete information documenting the claims made cannot be given in the notice or on the packaging label, reference should be made to where the consumer may receive further information about the marketed advantages, such as on the trader’s website, in a brochure etc.

There will be less reason for the Consumer Ombudsman to intervene concerning information about a product or company that is given in a specific, neutral and objective way without emphasis on ethical or environmental concerns. The concern for the consumer will not come to the forefront as much in these cases, since information given in this way is not as likely to mislead the consumer.

Example of product information given in a specific and neutral way: “CO2 emissions: 114g/km”

3. Particulars concerning environmental claims

3.1 Relationship to the other sections of these Guidelines

Reference is made to section 1.3 of these Guidelines concerning what is meant by “environmental claims”. Chapters 1, 2, 5 and 6 apply correspondingly for the assessment of environmental claims in marketing. Chapter 3 specifies factors of particular importance when using environmental claims in marketing.

3.2 Isolated environmental claims

General claims such as “environmentally friendly”, “green” etc. may be likely to give the consumer an impression that the product or activity does not have any – or only a positive – effect on the environment. [10]

If general claims such as “environmentally friendly”, “green” etc are used without further explanation in the marketing of a product, the trader must be able to document that the product harms the environment to a significantly lower degree during its entire life cycle “from cradle to grave” than all other products in the same product category. [11]

In practice, it will be quite difficult to use claims of environmental superiority in marketing without also giving a more detailed explanation of the properties to which the environmental claim relates.

Examples of isolated environmental claims which will in practice be misleading:

“Green electric razor” “Environmentally friendly sofa”

3.3 Environmental claims with explanations

As a rule, if an environmental claim is used in a particular context, such as together with an explanation of what it is that gives the product its environmental superiority, it will not be assessed as applicable to all aspects of the product.

Environmental claims with explanations will as a rule be more informative to the consumer than isolated claims. However, the explanations must be clear, intelligible and given in connection with the claim to ensure that the claim and the explanation are read together.[12]

Example of a claim with an explanation that may be informative:

“Consider the environment. Take the bus and contribute to sparing the city of 2.3-km traffic jams”.

A precondition for using an environmental claim with an explanation is that the explanation is sufficiently precise and does not point to insignificant aspects of the product’s environmental effect. Marketing may become misleading if properties of utterly marginal significance to the product are highlighted. The same applies if in such an explanation reference is made to components which the product has never contained or the use of which is prohibited.

Example: It will be misleading to emphasise in marketing that a certain brand of toilet tissue is not chlorine-bleached, when this is a requirement for all equivalent products.

Any environmental superiority of the product must at all times be seen in relation to equivalent products on the market. If a significant portion of these products hold to an equivalent or higher environmental standard, it will be seen as misleading to use environmental claims in marketing, even if the content of these claims is further elaborated upon.

Example: Even if chlorine-bleached paper were not illegal (see example above), it would be misleading to emphasise in marketing that the paper is not chlorine-bleached if most equivalent products are not chlorine- bleached.

According to the Consumer Ombudsman’s assessment, it must be documentable that the product is among the best 1/3 of all equivalent products on the market in terms of environmental effect, in order for the advertiser to use the environmental claims together with an explanation in marketing.[13]

3.4 Particulars concerning environmentally hazardous and complex products or companies

According to the Consumer Ombudsman’s assessment, there is a lower threshold for use of environmental claims in marketing to be judged as misleading if either of the following applies:

  • the product or company is particularly harmful to the environment, seen from a “cradle-to-grave” perspective, or
  • the product is so complex that it is difficult to compare its environmental properties to that of other products in the same product

In practice, it will be quite difficult to present documentation showing that such products are significantly better than equivalent products or belong to the best 1/3 in terms of environmental effect. It is therefore recommended that traders highlight specific environmental properties in the form of product information when marketing such products; see section 2.6 of these Guidelines.

Examples of products which the Ombudsman will assess as particularly harmful to the environment are cars and fossil fuels. It will for instance be misleading to market heating oil as environmentally friendly or beneficial to the environment.

An example of a product for which it is essentially difficult to compare the total environmental damage is cars. Cars are produced in different ways, consist of very many components and have various emission components in operation.

4. Particulars on ethical claims

4.1 Relationship to the other sections of these Guidelines

Reference is made to section 1.3 concerning what is meant by “ethical claims”. Chapters 1, 2, 5 and 6 apply correspondingly for the assessment of ethical claims in marketing. Chapter 4 specifies factors of particular importance when using ethical claims in

4.2 The product must be ethically superior

If ethical claims are used in the marketing of a particular product, it will appear to the consumer as though the product is ethically superior to equivalent products. Ethical claims may therefore only be used to the extent that the ethical superiority of the products can be documented.

4.3 Clear and balanced presentation of message required

It must be clear and evident what the ethical claim is referring to, whether it be e.g. working conditions, child labour, minimum price or other factors. Exaggerations regarding the ethical properties of the product may not be used.

4.4 Isolated ethical claims

If ethical claims are used without explanatory text in the marketing of a particular product, it must be documentable that the product has significant ethical superiority to equivalent products throughout its entire life cycle.

This implies that in practice it will be quite difficult to use claims of ethical superiority in marketing without also giving a further explanation of the properties to which the ethical claims relate.[14]

Example of an isolated ethical claim which will be seen as unfair and misleading: “Fair tea”, “Make an ethical choice – buy Product X”

4.5 Ethical claims with explanations

As a rule, if an ethical claim is used in a particular context, such as with an explanation of why the product is ethical, it will not be assessed as applicable to all aspects of the product.

This is given, however, that the subsequent explanation is sufficiently precise and does not point to insignificant ethical aspects of the product. The marketing may easily be judged as misleading if properties of or improvements on the product with utterly marginal ethical significance are emphasised.

Furthermore, any ethical superiority must at all times be seen in relation to existing offers of equivalent products on the market. If a significant portion of these products hold an equivalent or higher ethical standard, it must under all circumstances be seen as misleading to use ethical claims in marketing, even if the content of these claims is further elaborated upon.

4.6 The ethical claim seen in relation to other ethical values

If ethical claims are used in marketing, this may create an impression that the product does not conflict with other ethical values. Ethical claims should therefore only be used to the extent that there are no violations of other generally accepted ethical norms, e.g. regarding working conditions.

5. Particulars on company branding and market profile

5.1 Relationship to the other sections of these Guidelines

Chapter 5 specifies factors of particular importance concerning a company’s branding and market profile efforts in which environmental or ethical involvement is emphasised in marketing. Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4 and 6 apply correspondingly for the assessment of branding and market profile efforts.

5.2 General considerations on company branding and market profile

Branding a trader’s environmental or ethical profile through use of slogans, mottos, visions, partnership with charitable organisations and so on in marketing may be seen as misleading or otherwise in conflict with the Marketing Control Act.

What is decisive for the specific assessment of whether or not any marketing approach with branding or market profile efforts is in conflict with the Marketing Control Act is the overall impression it gives to the consumer. In this assessment, the use of statements, images, sounds, symbols and similar means will be taken into consideration; cf. section 2.5 of these Guidelines. Reference is made in the following to factors which, in addition to those mentioned in section 2.5, will be of central importance in the overall assessment.

  • The marketing approach should be as specific as possible. Traders should point to specific measures the company has taken for the environment or other causes, rather than making general claims that the company is concerned with the environment or takes ethical considerations. [15] This is because information about specific measures and plans is more informative to the consumer than vague and unclear statements about involvement and
  • The marketing approach must be seen in the context of the extent of ethical or environmental measures taken by the company. It may be misleading and insufficiently informative to emphasise specific measures or certain aspects of a company if these are likely to give the company a better environmental or ethical profile than what there is an objective basis for based on the company’s range and
  • The extent of the marketing approach and in which media it occurs may influence the assessment. There may be greater reason to react to larger campaigns e.g. on billboards and television than to marketing and information given on a company’s
  • The context in which ethical or environmental claims are It will be positive if the consumer receives supplementary information in the actual marketing approach concerning the specific measures taken by the company.

Examples of general, unclear claims:

“Gerd’s Laundromat – thinking about the environment” “We are aiming for a better world”

Example of a more informative claim:

“We are now reducing our total power consumption by 50%”

If ethical or environmental claims are used in the name of a company, brand label etc., and this name is used in marketing, then the same requirements of documentation apply as for other ethical or environmental argumentation in marketing approaches.

Example: “The Green Cleaning Company”

5.3 Particulars on aims, visions etc.

Information in marketing on the company’s ambitions, visions or other future aspirations should be used with great caution. Such claims, playing on environmental or ethical argumentation, may be misleading or unfair towards the consumer. This applies particularly to ambitions which the company is far from being able to fulfil at the time of the marketing approach, and to aims that are vaguely formulated in the marketing.

For a trader to be allowed to use claims concerning ambitions in marketing, the company must have clear, specific plans on how to achieve this ambition. The claim must also be formulated as specifically as possible.

Example of ambition that may be informative:

“We will reduce our carbon emissions by 5% every year for the next 10 years”.

5.4 Particulars on good causes and collaboration with charitable organisations

Information that a company supports good causes or collaborates with charitable organisations should be used with caution in marketing, since this is a form of marketing which according to the circumstances may have a strong influence on the consumer.

If information is used in marketing stating that the company supports good causes or collaborates with charitable organisations, then it must be supplemented by clear information concerning the way in which the company supports or collaborates with charitable organisations.

If the company advertises that a set donation is made for each product sold, then it must provide information that is as specific as possible, preferably in specific figures of NOK, on what fraction of the price of a product is donated to the charitable cause.[16]

The marketing should contain a reference to where further information about the collaboration or support may be obtained, e.g. a telephone number or a website.

When the support/collaboration is discontinued, all information about the support/collaboration shall be removed from the marketing, including packaging.

6. Use of labelling systems and symbols

6.1 General

If traders use labelling systems or symbols in their marketing, then information shall be provided concerning how to obtain more detailed or supplementary information about the labelling system or symbol, e.g. on the company’s website.

The criteria for use of labelling systems or symbols must be able to be checked and controlled. This applies to both official and private labelling systems.

The trader must be able to document that the criteria are fulfilled.

Even if a company fulfils the criteria for use of labelling systems or symbols, its use of these in marketing must be in compliance with the regulations stated in the Marketing Control Act and these Guidelines.

Example: A product with the Nordic Swan ecolabel may not be marketed as “environmentally friendly” unless it can be documented that the product is significantly less harmful to the environment throughout its life cycle than all other products within the same product category; cf. section 3.2 of these Guidelines.

Use of labelling systems in marketing must not lead to a misleading “greenwashing” of a brand label or product series. If only one or some products within a product series are environment-labelled, then it must be clearly stated in the marketing which products are labelled.

Example: It may be misleading if a cleaning agent producer which offers several different cleaning agents under the same brand label markets the brand label as Swan-labelled when only one of the products is actually Swan-labelled.

6.2 Official labelling systems

The use of official labelling systems in marketing may provide the consumer with useful information concerning the properties of a product or company. The Consumer Ombudsman therefore encourages traders to use official labelling systems.

By official labelling systems is understood systems that are approved or administered on behalf of public authorities, and for the use of which clear criteria are determined.

Nordic Ecolabelling manages the two official environmental labels in Norway – the Nordic Swan label and the European Ecolabel flower. See www.ecolabel.no.

Debio controls and approves organic production in Norway. An approval from Debio is a precondition for claiming that a product is organic and for using the “Ø” (Norwegian “økologisk” – organic) label in marketing. See www.debio.no.

Fairtrade Max Havelaar Norge manages the official “Fairtrade” label in Norway. See www.fairtrade.no.

6.3 Private labelling systems

Use of private labelling systems in marketing should be avoided, because such labels will be likely to create confusion and mislead consumers, based on an overall assessment. This particularly applies to areas for which official labelling systems already exist.

Individual companies’ labels will be more likely to mislead consumers than so-called industry labels.

If a company or industry nonetheless decides to use its own label in its marketing, this must mean that the product or company is qualitatively superior to other equivalent products or companies. Also, there shall be clear criteria for bearing the label and an authority that controls the use of the label. Furthermore, the label must not be easily confused with other labels, including official ones.

7. Other guidelines etc. addressing environmental and ethical marketing

The Consumer Ombudsman has issued the following guidelines to supple- ment these Guidelines:

  • Guidelines for Using Environmental Claims in Marketing of Energy for House Heating (1 March 2009)

Also, the Consumer Ombudsman has previously issued briefing letters etc. which as of 10 September 2009 has not been updated according to the new Marketing Control Act. The Consumer Ombudsman assumes that the content will largely be the same under the new Marketing Control Act. The following applies until further notice:

  • Briefing Letter on the Use of Environmental Claims in Marketing of Vehicles (3 September 2009)
  • Norwegian Industrial Norm for Origin-Guaranteed Energy Contracts from Renewable Energy (EBL, 17 April 2007)

Further information about the guidelines etc. or the positions taken by the Consumer Ombudsman may be obtained by contacting our office on (+47) 23 400 600 or via e-mail: post@forbrukertilsynet.no. See also our website: www.forbrukertilsynet.no.

 

September 2009.

Footnotes

[1] See Regulation on the Consumer Ombudsman and Market Council’s case procedure etc. section 3, second and third sentences.

[2] Cf. Directive 2005/29/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council, Article 2c.

[3] The Act of 9 January 2009, No. 2 relating to the control of marketing and contract terms and conditions etc. (the Marketing Control Act), the new marketing control act, came into effect on 1 June 2009. The Act replaced the previous Marketing Control Act of 16 June 1972, No. 47. Through the new Marketing Control Act, the Unfair Commercial Practices Directive (Directive 2005/29/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 May 2005 concerning unfair business-to-consumer commercial practices in the internal market and amending Council Directive 84/450/EEC, Directives 97/7/EC, 98/27/EC and 2002/65/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council and Regulation (EC) No. 2006/2004) is implemented. In these Guidelines, no reference is made to the provisions within the Directive.

[4] See Proposition No. 55 to the Odelsting (2007-2008), p. 55 and p. 196.

[5] See Proposition No. 55 to the Odelsting (2007-2008) p. 43.

[6] See http://www.iccwbo.org/policy/marketing/id8532/index.html

[7] See Proposition No. 55 to the Odelsting (2007–2008), pp. 54, 56, 194 and 196. On p. 56 it is also stated that there may be some uncertainty tied to whether the extents of section 3 of the previous Act and section 8 of the current Act are the same.

[8] In Market Council case (MC case) no. 25/97, statements from the giftnemnd (Advisory sufficient scientific documentation.

[9] Use of the statement “Drink coffee with a better conscience” was perceived as unfair in Market Council case no. 11/78. The Market Council stated the following: “Appealing to the potential buyer’s conscience is synonymous with attempting to utilise an emotional, notably subjectiv consept for purpose of promoting sales”.

[10] See a similar viewpoint in Article 4 of ICC International Code of Environmental Advertising from June 2001.

[11] In MC case no. 20/93, the Market Council agreed with the Consumer Ombudsman that such a principal must apply for isolated environmental claims.

[12] See also MC case no. 20/93 in which the Market Council emphasised that the explanation was given immediately below the text and that it was clear and understandable.

[13] The Market Council gave its assent to this position in MC case no. 25/97.

[14] See also Market Council case no. 11/78 on unfair use of the statement “Drink coffee with a better conscience”.

[15] See also the ICC International Code of Environmental Advertising from June 2001, Article 4 on “corporate advertisements”.

[16] Previous practice in MC case no. 23/91 is altered explicitly by the new Marketing Control Act of 1 June 2009; see Proposition No. 55 to the Odelsting (2007-2008), pp. 44-45: “The Ministry has hereby concluded that it will alter practice so that it will no longer be seen as unfair as such to tie support for charitable causes directly to revenue volume”.

 

Tilbake til toppen