INNOCENT fruit smoothies are “more nutritionally beneficial” than fruit juice, the advertising standards watchdog said today.
It was a moral victory for the hugely-successful firm, run by former Huddersfield man Richard Reed.
Soft drink companies had complained that Innocent’s claim that their smoothies contained “the flesh, the fibre, more of the good stuff ... it’s even better for you that way” was misleading.
But after consulting a nutrition expert, who said “smoothies may have increased health benefits over juice since they are closer to the whole fruits”, the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) dismissed the complaint.
The ASA also threw out a further complaint from PepsiCo, Smoothie Revolution Ltd and two viewers, that Innocent “unfairly denigrated” freshly squeezed juice by implying it was less beneficial than it is.
The watchdog said the advert did not discredit or unfairly attack fresh juice, and viewers would merely infer that “smoothies could have additional benefits”.
The ad compared an orange squeezed into a juicer and a selection of whole fruits which “jumped” into a blender, a voice-over said: “Innocent Smoothies. Nothing but nothing but fruit.”
The complainants also said a claim the drinks are made from “crushed whole fruit ... so you get all of the flesh, fibre, vitamins antioxidants” was wrong because the smoothies did not contain the whole fruit. But the ASA said Innocent used the entire edible fruit, excluding only banana skins and other bits usually thrown away.