Edible oil industry body Solvent Extractors Association of India (SEA) has filed complaints with food regulator Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) and advertising industry watchdog Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) against Patanjali Ayurved for alleged misleading ads for mustard oil and sought action against the yoga guru Ramdev-promoted firm.
The Solvent Extractors Association of India (SEA) has written to the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) and the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) requesting regulators to “take action” against Patanjali, alleging that the company’s recent advertisement for ‘Kacchi Ghani Mustard Oil’ was not in good taste.
“We would like to bring to your notice the content mentioned in Patanjali Ayurved Ltd advertisement is totally incorrect and misleading the consumers,” SEA said in a letter to the FSSAI and the ASCI.
The advertisement is unnecessarily misleading the consumer and also derogatory and denigrating to the oil industry, SEA said, adding that the vegetable oil industry was a responsible industry and such unfounded communication negates the image of the industry.
“This advertisement willfully wants to create panic in the minds of consumers against solvent extracted oils and refined oils. The advertisements contravenes numerous ASCI codes. We therefore kindly request you to look into our complain and direct Patanjali Ayurved to withdrew these misleading advertisements,” SEA said in its letter.
Patanjali has, however, insisted that its commercial was “based on facts, findings and research. We do not intend or mislead anyone”.
The association said it had sent a detailed memorandum with documentary evidence to Patanjali Ayurved, drawing their attention and requested to withdraw the misleading statements made in the advertisement against solvent extracted oils.
“Unfortunately, Patanjali continued the advertisement both in print and electronic media and therefore the Association has approached FSSAI as well as Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI) to direct the Patanjali to withdraw the said advertisement with misleading facts/statements,” SEA said in a statement.