México – Advertisers struggle to comply with labeling and advertising permits

Mexico’s advertising industry faces new challenges as a result of the new front-end labeling regulation, which came into effect on March 8, and which requires advertisers to request advertising permits from the Federal Commission for Protection against Health Risks (Cofepris) to promote pre-packaged food and non-alcoholic beverages that include certain elements in the front-end labeling.

Luis López Linaldi, founding partner of the firm Solórzano Linaldi, explains that since that time, the labeling of prepackaged food and non-alcoholic beverages with excess calories, sugars, trans fats and sodium has been modified. Now, this front labeling system is introduced as a reference parameter to define whether or not certain restrictions apply to the advertising of food and non-alcoholic beverages.

The 3 main changes in the Regulation of the General Law of Health on Advertising

Advertising of pre-packaged food and non-alcoholic beverages must be congruent with the front labeling and, if applicable, include warning seals, precautionary legends, recommendation or acknowledgement statements.

The use of children’s characters, cartoons, celebrities, mascots or interactive elements in the advertising of pre-packaged food and non-alcoholic beverages that have warning seals and are directed to infants is prohibited.

The advertiser must obtain authorization before broadcasting the advertisement with warning seals on free-to-air television, pay TV, movie theaters, internet and other digital platforms.