The Meatless Farm Co is risking the wrath of the advertising watchdog – although it could also garner plenty of free PR – with the launch of its biggest marketing campaign to date under the strapline “Now that’s a M… F… Burger”.
The company, founded in 2016 by Danish national Morten Toft Bech with the aim of helping to reduce overall meat consumption, last year secured a seven-figure investment from the Channel 4 Growth Fund.
This has paved the way for the Leeds-based business to run its first major TV campaign across Channel 4 and its All 4 streaming service, to drive awareness and boost sales. It currently has supply deals with Sainsbury’s and Morrisons, as well as with Amazon’s Whole Foods Market.
The new TV ad will be supported by print ads, out of home, radio and social media activity, as well as branded electric cars which will be driven around London.
The outdoor execution features a character called “Granny Annie”, who, according to the company blog at least, loves nothing more than cooking meat-free meals for her family, has a penchant for Zumba and a roving eye for Joaquin Phoenix.
Whether the Advertising Standards Authority will see the funny side of “Now that’s a M… F… Burger” is another matter, however. Last year, the regulator forced BrewDog to rip down a poster campaign for its alcohol-free beer Punk AF, which carried the strapline “Sober as a motherfu”, after the branding the play on words offensive.
Nevertheless, Meatless Farm Co chief growth officer Michael Hunter reckons the campaign is simply light-heated and fun. He said: “Throughout lockdown, we’ve seen a surge in sales, with more and more Brits trying, or considering making the swap to plant-based, even if it is just once a week.
“We felt the nation needed a bit of a lift as it’s been a tough time for everyone, so more than ever we wanted to create something light-hearted and fun that consumers would remember when they are looking for alternatives to meat.”