Two television commercials using graphic and raunchy sexual innuendo to sell frozen food dinners are inappropriate for family viewing and should be discontinued, One Million Moms is urging the Kraft Heinz Company.
In protesting the Devour microwave meal ads that have become more visible this football season, One Million Moms Director Monica Cole said Kraft Heinz has gone too far and likely will lose loyal, conservative customers.
"The commercials [are] extremely perverted in nature [and are airing] during family viewing times," Cole said. "The vulgarity is extremely unnecessary and these sleazy type commercials are turning off parents from buying their products—not just Devour, but the entire line of … the Kraft Heinz Company products."
The Devour campaign includes two commercials using innuendo and suggestive language to insinuate a wife having sexual relations with a scantily clad pool boy, and an employee engaged in apparent sadomasochistic relations in the office breakroom, all in efforts to sell microwaveable frozen entrees. The campaign continues on Facebook with a sexually suggestive hashtag supposedly describing the food.
"We don't want to give our hard-earned dollars to companies that cannot just advertise the food and the quality of the food," Cole said. "They have to pretty much hit the rock bottom and use these indecent ads to sell their food products."
The advocacy group has been successful in many campaigns, including one that helped lead to the cancellation of ABC's "The Muppets" 2015 series that used characters attractive to children to promote adult storylines, and a campaign that led McDonalds to install Wi-Fi filters in its corporate-owned restaurants and to the technology available to franchises, One Million Moms said.
Among other victories are campaigns against Abercrombie & Fitch, a company once known for using printed advertising that One Million Moms and others said bordered on pornography, and for using shirtless male sales clerks in its New York stores, among other tactics.
"One in particular, [Abercrombie & Fitch] had swimwear with padded bikini tops for children 6 to 11 years old," Cole said. "So for little girls as young as 6 years old they had these swim tops … attempting to sexualize little girls. Those bikinis were pulled off the shelves fairly promptly," she said, after One Million Moms encouraged supporters to contact the retailer.
Today, the clothing company has rebranded itself and uses fully clothed models.
"Because of the fact of us reaching out and letting our voice be heard, Abercrombie & Fitch has changed," Cole said. "I'm sure sales and the bottom line, their bottom line was suffering, and we know that money talks. But they know why their sales were dropping, because so many families were speaking out [about] how offended they were."
One Million Moms, a 250,000-strong group organized 12 years ago by the American Family Association, is asking parents and others to protest the Devour food commercials by contacting Kraft Heinz through links at http://onemillionmoms.com/current-campaigns/devour-has-succumbed-to-tasteless-advertising.
"There has not been success with this particular campaign. The commercials are still airing, and we know that the cultural change and shift has a lot to do with who's producing these commercials and who they feel like is viewing these types of commercials," Cole said. "But there are still conservative families and wholesome families that will not buy into this type of advertising. They're not going to buy into these commercials that have innuendos and suggestive language. If anything, it's going to push them farther away."
Diana Chandler is Baptist Press' general assignment writer/editor. BP (bpnews.net) reports on missions, ministry and witness advanced through the Cooperative Program and on news related to Southern Baptists' concerns nationally and globally.