Irish food marketer withdraws phallic ad

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DUBLIN--The Irish foods marketer Erin has pulled and amended its latest $1 million advertising campaign, which was running on commercial TV networks RTE1 and Network 2.

A TV spot for Erin's Sauce in Seconds brand, devised by Dublin-based Young's (a non-equity affiliate of Leo Burnett Co.), drew a torrent of complaints from the public. In the ad, the female lead wonders aloud about Brian from the accounts department, for whom she is cooking dinner. She asks the question "Is it true about what they say about Brian?" as she strokes a large cucumber, amid a lingering camera shot.

Young's was given one week to re-edit the commercial, which carried the slogan, "There's more to Erin", and to drop the "lingering hand on cucumber shot". The ad was pulled, revised and re-aired on RTE1, TnaG and Network 2. However, the ad is being broadcast unedited by Ireland's new channel, TV3.

"We had no plans to shock anyone, just to produce an ad which is a little different. The campaign is designed to oversee the launch of five new products over the next three months," says Erin Marketing Manager Liam Sheehan.

Copyright December 1998, Crain Communications Inc.

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