H. J. Heinz Company Australia Limited - s.87B undertaking

Company or individual details

  • H. J. Heinz Company Australia Limited
    004 200 319

Undertaking

On 19 December 2008, H.J Heinz Company Australia Limited (Heinz Australia) acquired 100 per cent of the shares in Golden Circle Limited (Golden Circle). The ultimate parent company of Heinz Australia is H. J. Heinz Company, an entity incorporated in the United States of America.

Prior to its acquisition by Heinz Australia, Golden Circle used the phrases “Proudly Australian owned”, “100% Australian owned” and similar phrases (Representations) on the labels of a range of Golden Circle beverage and food products, the Golden Circle website, www.goldencircle.com.au, other promotional material and its franchisee delivery trucks.

The ACCC was concerned that the use of the Representations since the date of the acquisition contravened section 52 of the Act.

Heinz Australia acknowledges the ACCC’s concerns and accepts that the use of the Representations on product labels and in promotional material since the date of the acquisition has contravened section 52 of the Act.

After being contacted by the ACCC, Heinz performed a number of voluntary actions to remedy the Representations. These actions are detailed in paragraph 10 of the undertaking.

In addition to these voluntary actions, Heinz Australia provided an undertaking to the ACCC, for the purposes of section 87B of the Act, to:

  • not sell or supply any products with labels carrying the Representations by no later than 24 March 2010;
  • use its reasonable best endeavours to ensure that in-store corrective signage continues to be displayed in stores while products with labels carrying the Representations are offered for sale;
  • where in-store corrective signage is removed prior to products with the Representations being sold through, cause an additional round of corrective advertising to be published in major newspapers;
  • publish a corrective advertisement in major newspapers;
  • maintain a corrective notice by way of prominent link on the Heinz Australia website and the Golden Circle website; and
  • use its best endeavours to cause stickers to be applied to Golden Circle franchisee vehicles bearing the Representations to cover those Representations.

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