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Vodafone throttled for throat sweet stunt

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A toddler from Essex nearly choked after swallowing a lozenge included in a Vodafone mailshot.

The child's parents complained to the advertising watchdog because they said the throat sweet could easily fall into the hands of young children.

The mailshot was offering customers free calling time and exclaimed: "Soon there'll be no excuse for you not being able to use your mobile. Unless, of course, you lose your voice ...". [a-hah, hence the throat sweet - ed]

It seems the kids opened the mail because they felt something inside. When they opened the letter, they thought the lozenge was a sweet. One of the children swallowed the lozenge and nearly choked on it.

Even though Vodafone pointed out that the lozenge was safe and sealed inside a plastic bag, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) agreed with the parents and told Vodafone not to repeat any similar sweet-toothed promotions.

Vodafone apologised for the incident and said it had not intended to worry customers.

Last year Vodafone was ticked off by the ASA after complaints that its saucy ads - featuring semi-naked couples - promoted texting while driving. ®

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