The best Christmas advertisements of 2022
Aldi/Tesco/McDonald's/John Lewis/Lidl/Asda

Waitrose has changed its Christmas advert after it was accused by a skin cancer charity of "glorifying" sunburn.

This year, the supermarket's advert was all about the effort farmers go to throughout the year so that we all have the perfect Christmas dinner.

However, there was backlash over one scene particular scene where it showed two farmers passing each other on trackers as the pair took a moment to lift up their shirts to compare the uneven sun tans on their arms after working outside in the heat.

Sign up to our free Indy100 weekly newsletter

Viewers criticised the inclusion of this part in the Christmas advert, describing the move as "absolutely astonishing" that it was "glorifying" sun tans with no education on its dangers.

"This is a kick in the teeth for all melanoma patients and for all the organisations trying to educate everyone on the dangers of sun tans. What on earth were you thinking to include this in a Christmas advert? Words fail me," one Facebook user wrote.

Viewers were unhappy and felt that a scene from Waitrose's Christmas advert "glorified" suntansWaitrose and Partners

Another person said: "It’s annoying for those who campaign for skin cancer awareness because they work tirelessly to educate people that a tan is dangerous and causes skin damage/cancer. The advert is seen to make light of it that’s all."

"This advert shows the year-round effort behind our Christmas products and real farmers," Waitrose said in response to the previous comment.

"We fully support sun safety and worked with a medic on set throughout the filming. They made sure everyone wore high factor sun protection, and gave advice to help our farmers stay safe, so we're sorry for the upset caused."

The ad also prompted criticism from Skin cancer charity Melanoma UK: “Waitrose can do better than this.

“Many organisations have used examples of tanning in their advertising. Unless they are doing this responsibly and warning of the dangers of overexposure to the sun, then they need to stop it.”

Melanoma skin cancer is the fifth most common cancer in the UK, with around 16,700 new cases in the country every year, according to Cancer Research UK.

Waitrose has since removed this clip from their ad and in a statement said: "Our ad celebrates the care and effort that our Partners and real farmers – who work in all weathers – put in to make sure our customers have what they need for Christmas.

“While we included some lighthearted and ‘true-to-life’ moments, we’ve listened to the comments made about the serious message of sun safety and will be using an updated version of the ad to address these concerns."

The company also addressed this change on Twitter and tweeted: "This year's Christmas ad celebrates the CARE we put in year round to make Christmas SPECIAL.

“You may notice we've cut a short clip, as we've listened to comments about sun safety.”

Have your say in our news democracy. Click the upvote icon at the top of the page to help raise this article through the indy100 rankings.

Please log in or register to upvote this article
The Conversation (0)