Walkers Crisps tackling obesity issue

We’ve always liked Walkers Crisps, the U.K.’s largest potato-chip company. For years they sponsored Leicester City, one of our favorite soccer teams. And they like to name their chips after soccer players. (Salt & Vinegar is “Salt & Lineker,” after Gary Lineker, and Cheese & Onion is “Cheese & Owen” after Michael Owen. They also tried to rename smoky bacon as “smoky Beckham,” but king David wouldn’t hear of it.) This morning we read that Walkers is launching its largest-ever advertising campaign, created by AMV BBDO. Gary Lineker remains the face of the campaign, but in place of the brand’s offbeat humor is a dietary message. Frankly, that doesn’t sound promising. But AMV creative chief Peter Souter seems to have the right attitude. He tells the Independent: “McDonald’s look like they are committing suicide in public. They seem apologetic. The fact that they work so hard to say ‘We sell salads,’ to me that says, in brackets, ‘Don’t eat the dead cow.’ People say crisps and sweets are bad for you. When they say sweets, it [affects] 100 brands, but because we are the biggest crisps brand by miles, it hits us really hard. We just wanted to do some ads that tell you exactly how it is and that it is OK to eat a bag of crisps a day.”