Cadbury's 'stupid' treasure hunt ad pulled after complaints

Keiligh Baker's picture

Cadbury has pulled its “real treasure hunt” ad campaign after archaeologists and the government accused it of advocating looting.

The Cadbury Freddo Treasures website called on children to "grab a metal detector" and dig holes looking for gold or treasure.

But the campaign was roundly criticised on social media, with archaologists accusing the chocolate maker of encourging looting.

Dr Aisling Tierney, of Bristol University, said it was "intensely stupid" and people could be prosecuted for digging without permission.

The company has now removed the website.

A Cadbury spokesman said: “It was not our intention to encourage anyone to break existing regulations regarding the discovery of new archeological artifacts and we are grateful this matter has been brought to our attention.

"We can now confirm that the webpage has been taken down and we are updating the content to focus solely on directing families to museums where existing treasures can be found."

Historic England said: "There are strict rules that protect England's archeological heritage, including laws governing the use of metal detectors.

"We are glad to see the campaign website is no longer live and would be happy to advise Cadbury to make sure any future campaign doesn't have unwelcome results."

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