Tesco’s controversial ad featuring double-jabbed Santa cleared by watchdog

Tesco ad featuring Santa with Covid vaccine passport cleared by watchdog
ASA guidelines state that adverts should show “protective Covid-19 measures” where “relevant”, such as social distancing and face masks.
// Tesco’s controversial festive TV campaign featuring Santa Claus bearing a Covid vaccine passport has been cleared by the ASA
// The ASA received over 5,000 complaints regarding the Christmas campaign

Tesco’s festive TV campaign featuring Santa Claus bearing a Covid vaccine passport has been cleared by the UK ad watchdog, The Guardian has reported.

This is despite anti-vaccination campaigners making it the second most complained about advert of all time.

The advert, titled “This Christmas, Nothing’s Stopping Us”, prompted more than 5,000 complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), which determines whether marketing campaigns have broken the UK advertising code.


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The ad shows the public determined to enjoy a proper Christmas with family and friends after lockdown restrictions prevented gatherings last year.

The 90-second clip saw Father Christmas almost being quarantined as he tries to enter the country.

He is allowed in by border officials after producing his vaccination certificate, prompting other travellers to start cheering.

“Having carefully assessed the 5,000 complaints we received about the Tesco Christmas ad campaign, we have concluded it doesn’t break our rules and there are no grounds for further action,” a spokesman for the ASA told The Guardian.

“We consider that the depiction of Santa displaying a proof of vaccine status in an airport is likely to be seen as a humorous reference to international travel rules people have experienced this year. It is unlikely to be interpreted as a message about these rules or the Covid-19 vaccine more widely.”

The scene sparked controversy on social media over just a matter of days, attracting criticism from those in the anti-vaccination movement who threatened to boycott the Big 4 supermarket following its release.

The ASA received 5,009 complaints from members of the public who felt that the scene encouraged medical discrimination and the need to be vaccinated.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Hurt them at the tills, too political by far, I will not support the Tesco vaccine story they should keep to selling groceries !

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