Toscani’s Latest Ad Idea: Garbage

Photographer Oliviero Toscani, the man who turned disturbing images of human tragedy into a sales pitch for Benetton, has taken a similar approach for Filippo Berio olive oil.
Toscani chose the massive, stinky, used tire dump in Westley, Calif., as the backdrop in a new print ad (shown here) for the gourmet cooking product. The grainy photo, coupled with a crisp product shot, is intended to highlight the brand’s environmentally minded tagline: “Message in a bottle. Nature unlimited.”
Tom Mueller, president of Hackensack, N.J.-based Filippo Berio’s U.S. operations, said consumers are numb to standard food photography, no matter how beautiful. “The message-what happens when you don’t interfere with nature but simply bottle it-is a clear and memorable one,” he said.
Toscani’s best-known Benetton ad showed a modern Pieta, with parents mourning a son dying of AIDS.
The $1 million Berio campaign was created by Italian shop Toscani-Spaldi. -Sloane Lucas