ASA launches review of Children and Young People’s Advertising Code

12 July 2022

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has launched its planned review of the Children and Young People’s Advertising Code.

The ASA sets the standards for responsible advertising in New Zealand and runs a complaints process to support compliance. In 2021, the ASA received 1245 formal complaints about 570 advertisements from a range of products and services. There is a 97 per cent compliance rate following requests to remove or change advertising.

The Children and Young People’s Code was released in 2017 and applies to any advertising for products and services that target children and / or young people – or have the potential to. This includes advertising for toys, games, clothing, sports equipment, events, and food and beverages.

The Code also includes several protections for children and young people, including restrictions around ads that may result in physical, mental or moral harm – such as bullying and unrealistic body image. The Code also includes restrictions around privacy and the collection of children and young people’s personal information.

Between 2017 and May 2022, 1.58 per cent of complaints to the ASA have been under the Children and Young People’s Advertising Code. The majority (63 per cent) have related to food and beverage advertisements. The ASA Codes Committee plan is to review codes at least every five years.

ASA Chief Executive Hilary Souter said the review provided an open and transparent platform to provide feedback on advertising standards that target children and young people.

“The review is an opportunity right now for advertisers, industry, public health, teachers, parents and children and young people to provide feedback on the current code to our Codes Committee,” she said.

Submissions close on 31 August 2022. The Codes Committee will then review submissions and release a draft updated code, which will also be made public for consultation.

An infographic on the summary of complaints regarding the Children and Young People’s Advertising Code is available to download: Infographic on summary of complaints: Children and Young People’s Advertising Code


Media enquiries

Hilary Souter
Chief Executive – Advertising Standards Authority
04 472 7852