Published on: November 3, 2021
We've had an ongoing discussion here about products that present themselves in a way that some believe is deceptive - like not having the kinds of ingredients that the packaging might suggest. There was criticism from Los Angeles Times business columnist David Lazarus of Special K Fruit & Yogurt cereal that prominently features berries on the box even though there are none of these items in the cereal.
MNB reader Dave Jones responded:
Regarding Truth in Labeling – Mr. Lazarus and others need to take a hard look at everything around them prior to bashing consumer packaged goods food shots. The packages all are noted – “Serving Suggestion” or “Enlarged to show product detail” right on the front of the packages. Does Lazarus really think the seasoning packet he buys for steak with a picture of the seasoning on a steak entitles him to receive the steak? How about a pouch of Tuna with the tuna shown on a salad does he receive the salad as well? A mug of cocoa on cocoa mix – where’s my mug shown on the package? When you bought your convertible were there any influences of commercials or magazine images showing how cool convertible owners are that swayed your opinion? Did you feel cheated if you weren’t as cool as those images?
There needs to be more truth in everything in life vs the image portrayed.
I think there's a difference between how a product is presented in packaging and whether or not it actually contains the ingredient that is featured. If a can of tuna fish actually contains another fish, is that deceptive labeling? Or within the realm of the acceptable? I think that's different from a pouch of tuna that doesn't actually have inside it the salad makings shown on the packaging.
Also, just for the record, my convertible instantly made me appear to be much cooler than I actually am. I have no complaints about that.
MNB reader Dan Hamilton wrote:
My beef with truth in advertising is the fast food joints that show you a mile high, hot burger, chicken sandwich, etc on tv but in reality what you get is nothing like what they advertise or pictured on the menu board. When was the last time you got a burger with the patty larger than the bun....never! Recent chicken sandwich war among the fast feeders are advertising a chicken patty that overwhelms the bun....what a farce! Liar liar pants on fire!
Yesterday Michael Sansolo contributed a column about what happened when the Atlanta Braves installed a soft-serve ice cream machine in the clubhouse. (Hint: The Braves won the World Series tonight.)
Michael wrote, in part:
Managers of all teams - especially in your stores and companies - can learn from this. The soft service ice cream machine was a small, seemingly meaningless gesture. But as the reporting of this dramatic sporting turnaround demonstrates, the machine did so much more.
In many ways it demonstrated management’s recognition of the players’ efforts and the importance of creating some fun and spirit, along side the work at hand. In that way, the machine was anything but a small gesture. It mattered because of what it meant.
One MNB reader wrote:
Hi Michael, loved your story about the Atlanta Braves and the soft serve machine. A day without soft serve is a day without sunshine, as Stew Leonard well knows. And as any Ted Lasso fan knows, it’s the little things that make the difference. It’s fixing the showers that begins the Lasso turnaround with AFC Richmond. And yes, AFC Richmond is as real to me as the Atlanta Braves.
But, demonstrating that you cannot please all the people all the time, another MNB reader wrote:
Since when did Sansolo start to channel Ted Lasso? Just like ball players do before each game; this is a stretch!