A complaint about the packaging of two flavours of Cactus Jack’s Schnapps for not being clearly labelled as alcohol and appealing to under 18s has not been upheld by the Independent Complaints Panel (ICP).  A copy of the full decision can be read here.

The complainant, a member of the public, believed that the use of Black Jack and Fruit Salad flavour names and branding reminiscent of the sweets on an alcoholic beverage would particularly appeal to under-18s and breach the Portman Group Code under section 3.2(h). They also did not believe that the label communicated the alcoholic nature of the product clearly enough, breaching the Code under section 3.1.

The Panel discussed the labels and concluded that the confectionery flavours were retro and were likely to resonate with older consumers, who were most likely to be in their late 20s or 30s. The Panel considered that whilst the confectionery names might have some appeal to under-18s, they did not think that this was strong enough to constitute particular appeal. The Panel did not uphold the complaint under Code rule 3.2(h).

The Panel also ruled that the inclusion of the word ‘schnapps’, the alcohol strength statement and product descriptor on the front label constituted clear signalling that the product contained alcohol, and did not uphold the complaint under Code rule 3.1.

Secretary to the Independent Complaints Panel, Kay Perry said:

‘‘Alcohol producers must be careful when using established flavours and branding on their products to ensure that they do not hold particular appeal to children. The Portman Group has a free, impartial advisory service who are always on hand to support producers.”