TV spots fool Canadians into eating broccoli


The Television Bureau of Canada has been blowing its own horn after revealing that a campaign by Toronto agency John St. was a hoax. Excuse me, an experiment. The ads (one below, two more after the jump) touted the "miraculous" nutritional value of broccoli and ran for five weeks earlier this year—but they weren't for broccoli at all. They were intended to prove that TV advertising can sell anything. And indeed, broccoli sales in the Great White Wasteland apparently shot up 8 percent. That's impressive, but there's not much else to do in Canada besides eat broccoli, is there? Plus, the stuff's healthy and relatively cheap—it's not like pitching overpriced minivans. And I suspect any mass-media campaign for anything broadcast anywhere would have some effect if it suddenly filled a void. Besides, if TV advertising's biggest boast is that it can sell lots of broccoli in Canada, the Internet has nothing to worry about. Now, pass the baby carrots!