The Foodwatch organisation said the Milch-Schnitte, which is sold under the slogan “Tastes light. Doesn’t weigh you down. Ideal for in between,” isn’t really light at all, but instead a calorie-bomb.
The small bar of cake with a sweetened cream filling has long been heavily promoted by athletes since its release in the late 1970s – first by boxing brothers Vitali and Vladimir Klitschko.
The latest campaign features women’s boxing world champion Susi Kentikian, and the extreme climbers Alexander and Thomas Huberbaum.
Anne Markwardt, head of Foodwatch’s campaign for false marketing accused Ferrero of “deceiving their customers” by implying the snack was sporty and light, despite practically dripping with sugar and fat.
But in a written statement to The Local, Ferrero said it was refusing to accept the prize and had “no indication that consumers perceive the advertising of Milch-Schnitte to be misleading.” The company added that the consumption of the snack was compatible with a balanced diet and exercise.
Foodwatch also ripped into Germany’s football federation for its marketing agreements with Ferrero saying the organization should concern itself more with promoting a healthy diet.
At Ferrero’s Frankfurt am Main headquarters, a receptionist refused to allow Foodwatch in the building to present the award personally.
Previous winners of the “Golden Windbag” Danone’s drink yoghurt “Actimel” yoghurt drink in 2009 and the ultra-sweet “Monte Drink” last year.