Kraft’s South Korean Oreo Cookie ad with breastfeeding baby causes controversy and shock in the United States
On April 22, 2012 At 12:02 pm
Responses : 28 Comments
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Kraft created an ad with a baby breastfeeding while holding a cookie, with the slogan “Milk’s Favorite Cookie,” at the bottom of the ad. This ad, when it leaked out from an ad forum, caused Fox news to describe the ad as shocking, as well as "provocative", and ABC news to describe it as controversial, due to the exposed nipple.
According to Fox news, several media outlets in South Korea, said the ad is legitimate and running in South Korea.
Kraft stated they created the ad for one time use at a South Korean advertising awards forum and they never intended it to run in South Korea or any other country.
However, the ad did leak out from the forum and Kraft, parent company of Nabisco and Oreo cookies, told ABC News, that they did not create the ad. Cheil Worldwide, an independent advertising agency, is attributed to creating the ad, who said they did not mean for the ad to go public.
“Our understanding is that they created it for use at an isolated advertising awards forum in Korea,” the official said. “It was never intended for consumer advertising or public distribution.”
Huffington Post, which shows the ad without censoring, posted an update, stating that Cheil Worldwide is Kraft’s ad distributor, but they had no intention of the ad going public, despite the leak.
UPDATE: A representative from Kraft Foods reached out to HuffPost Food to clarify the origins of this ad. The ad was created by Kraft's ad agency, Cheil Worldwide, for a one-time use at an advertising forum and was not intended for public distribution or use with consumers.
Kotaku website, which shows both the censored and uncensored version, took the ad in stride and said, “You can't dunk Oreo cookies into boob, silly baby!” The site reported that the ad debuted in South Korea this month and titled “Oreo Basic Instinct”.
Care2 asked why people consider the ad controversial and the response from MSNBC writer was that it was “icky” and sexualizes breastfeeding, declaring the ad as “women-being-objectified”.
Williams cites MSNBC writer Kavita Varma-White, who criticized the ad as “kind of… icky… about the way this ad blatantly sexualizes breast-feeding” and declared the ad to be of the “women-being-objectified” sort.
Williams argues that the image is not “automatically sexualized” at all, but is “a memorable photo, it’s the knowing look in the baby’s eyes, combined with intimate closeness of the scene, that makes it compelling.” Saying that the nursing baby ad is “sexualized” show how, for some segments of our society, the image of a naked breast (horrors!) means one and one thing only (sex). This is thinking that contributes to banning, or attempts to ban, breast-feeding in public.
Americans appear the only ones freaking out about the ad, which Adweek called, “apoplectic shock” over breastfeeding and an exposed nipple.
This South Korean ad for Oreo cookies, credited to ad agency Cheil Worldwide, features an image that would send this country into apoplectic shock (breastfeeding and an exposed nipple!). It also stars a surprisingly charismatic baby whose face suggests he totally knows what's happening here and is OK with it.
The Christian Post, which does not show the ad at all on their site, stated, “The ad continues to explain in the picture that: "For all you haters commenting on this…when you have milk, you gotta have Oreo.” The Christian Post also said there is no word as to Kraft being subject to additional action for the ad.
According to Dr. Momma, Anna, director of Peaceful Parenting Network, took the ad and created a “fun spin” on it. Anna added, “Breastfeeding? You deserve a cookie.” Then she explains on the picture, how many more calories nursing mothers need. Facebook, accused of attempting to remove all pictures of breastfeeding babies, supposedly removed the picture because it exposed a woman’s breast.
There are no reports found on South Korean citizens’ reactions to the ad, but according to Bil Browning, South Koreans are not as shy about breastfeeding as Americans are. Accordingly, the South Korean parents are more concerned about feeding the baby a cookie, than the woman’s breast or nipple.
Mriana is a humanist and the author of "A Source of Misery". She has two grown sons and raises cats. She enjoys writing, reading, science, philosophy, psychology, and other subjects. Mriana is also an animal lover, who cares for their welfare as living beings, who are part of the earth. She is a huge Star Trek fan in a little body.
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