Woolies isn’t the only one that has used the Anzac spirit to sell products. Around the World, brands have used their national remembrance holiday to sell everything from tequila margaritas to boobs. Lest we forget to buy. (please don’t send us hate mail for that comment)
Under Australian law, it’s illegal to “use the word ‘Anzac’, or any word resembling it, in connection with any trade, business, calling or profession or in connection with any entertainment or any lottery or art union”.
If a brand wants to use the word ‘Anzac’ it must first have the approval of the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs. If a brand doesn’t get the tick of approval, it risks a $51,000 fine.
Brands often dodge the ANZAC restriction by substituting the term “Gallipoli”.
VB’s ‘Raise A Glass’
This is the sixth year that Victoria Bitter has run its “Raise A Glass” campaign. But the ethics of this campaign have been debated since its beginning.
Alcoholism is the most common health problem for Vietnam soldiers. According to Department of Veteran Affairs, around 43 per cent of returned soldiers will be affected by risky or dependent drinking at one point or another.
In their defence, VB has donated around $7 million to the Returned Services League and Legacy since the start of the campaign.
Target Deluxe Camp Gallipoli Anzac Swag
On Target’s website, the $245 swag is marketed as “embracing the ANZAC spirit in a night of remembrance and entertainment. This classic swag is a great way to be part of the commemorations and is a quality item for you or as a gift for friends and family”.
Target has developed an exclusive range of official Camp Gallipoli merchandise including blankets, picnic rugs, homewares and women’s, men’s and children’s clothing, all of which have been specially designed in-house to complement the Camp Gallipoli events
Target clarified that “all profits from of the sale of Camp Gallipoli merchandise will be donated to the Camp Gallipoli Foundation”.
REAL Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery
Last year, a Melbourne plastic surgery company held a “Anzac Day Mateship Competition” for a chance to win tickets to Collingwood vs. Essendon ANZAC day AFL match.
“REAL wants you to take some time with a friend to remember the courage shown by our soldiers,” the website states. The catch was that people had to fill out a questionnaire, which included classy questions like:
– How would you rate your breasts?
– What bra cup size would you love to have?
– How would you celebrate with your bestie after getting the breasts you truly desire?
That’s what the diggers fought for.
RSL’s national president, retired Rear Admiral Ken Doolan, told the ABC that he was appalled by the misuse of Anzac to sell plastic surgery. “I trust that the authorities will take necessary action, because that is quite beyond the pale,” he said.
In 1989, a US Senator said that: “Instead of using Memorial Day as a time to honor and reflect on the sacrifices made by Americans in combat, many Americans use the day as a celebration of the beginning of summer.” This sentiment still rings true today, with Memorial Day used to promote everything from pastries to tequila.
— Vegas Blow Dry Bar (@Vegasblowdrybar) May 22, 2014
— Louisville Slugger (@sluggernation) May 26, 2014
Take time to enjoy the sweeter things in life today, & to remember those who made the sacrifices for us to enjoy them pic.twitter.com/6LcJfIosi0
— Cinnabon (@Cinnabon) May 26, 2014
— Hooters (@Hooters) May 26, 2014
— Fat Daddy's Live (@fatdaddyslive) May 26, 2014
— Heinz Ketchup (@HeinzKetchup_US) May 23, 2014
It’s a dangerous line to tread between acknowledging the importance of the public holiday and exploiting the day for commercial benefit. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.