Hooch owner hits back at ASA ruling

Global Brands, which owns Hooch, has vigorously defended itself after the ad watchdog banned an ad for the alcopop featuring Vine star Joe Charman.

Senior brand manager Christian Sarginson said the company, which also makes the likes of Reef, VK and Goldschläger, was "extremely disappointed with the ruling", which followed a single complaint to the Advertising Standards Authority.

"Global Brands went through a rigorous process when selecting social media influencers to work with, utilising all available resources and data to ensure the audience was well within the accepted boundaries for alcohol advertising," said Sarginson.

"Unfortunately, despite the data provided and the overwhelmingly positive response, the one solitary complaint has been upheld and we have been asked to remove this particular piece."

In its ruling, the ASA said that because the ad featured a stunt carried out using a swimming pool inflatable it was likely to appeal to under-18s.

Sarginson said that the complaint was the first the company had ever received for its advertising.

He added that the "#OutrageouslyRefreshing" campaign, of which this video was part, had achieved significant exposure, with more than 13.5 million views across 17 pieces of video content reaching 11.8 million people in the brand’s 18-to-24 target demographic, which he called "increasingly difficult to reach".

Hooch scandalised the tabloid press when it became one of the UK’s first alcopop brands in the 1990s. After nine years off the market, it was reintroduced in 2012 and hit TV screens two years later in a campaign featuring comedy character Keith Lemon, below.

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