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GBK apologises for ‘curry war' advert following backlash

19 October 2018 by
GBK apologises for ‘curry war' advert following backlash

GBK has apologised for an advert in which a representative for the company stood outside independent Indian restaurants and argued their products were inauthentic.

The advert, which challenged the restaurants to a "curry war" to promote the company's new Ruby Murray burger, has since been deleted from GBK's social media channels.

In the clip, which ran with the tag-line "your favourite curry is not authentic", a man can be seen blocking the entrances to curry houses on London's Brick Lane and arguing with proprietors.

He can also be seen wearing sandwich boards targeting the individual restaurants, with slogans like "Shaad, you're going to be shattered" and "Bengal Cuisine, we've cooked up something better". It is currently unclear whether the restaurant owners had agreed to be part of the campaign.

The video triggered a large-scale backlash in the last two days, despite having been originally posted in September.

In a statement a representative for GBK said: "To those offended by our Ruby Murray video, we humbly apologise. The video was intended to be humorous.

"We know that a burger could never pass off as an authentic Indian dish. Having read your comments we've made the decision to take down the content."

The campaign was run by advertising company You Agency. GBK has previously enlisted You's help on other campaigns, including one that targeted vegetarians in 2016.

The campaign, which told non-meat eaters that "resistance is futile" and that cows "eat grass so you don't have to" was accused of alienating the company's vegetarian audience. More than 150 complaints were lodged against the campaign with the Advertising Standards Agency.

At the time GBK apologised, saying "our intentions were light-hearted and not meant to cause any offence, but clearly we have, and for that we apologise". On the website for the ad company, the run of adverts is referred to as a "highly successful campaign".

When approached by The Caterer, You Agency declined to comment.

Gourmet Burger Kitchen responds to vegetarian ads backlash>>

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