Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Grand Game: Hellman's Ad

This ad....this....wow.  Feel free to share your reactions.

Hellmann's short film (Eat Real. Eat Local) from Yoho Yue on Vimeo.

With thanks to O., who sent the thing (I had not seen it).  O. writes:   

I'm a Canadian economics student at the ***********... I've seen this video pop up a couple of times on Facebook, and I've been very disappointed with how gullible people around me seem to be about it, despite my best efforts. It's a campaign ad by Hellman's (owned by Unilever) full of mostly senseless arguments for you to eat local Canadian food. What do you think? What's your tactic when you see this kind of thing? Sometimes, when I try to explain that trade isn't a zero-sum game, I feel like I'm showing a dog card tricks.

Well, O., you could...start a blog!  In the meantime, though, keep showing those dogs those card tricks.  That's a new label category now, so thanks for that!


Anonymous said...

Funny how they go on and on about fruits and vegetables but ignore wheat. Wish I knew which country was the world's second biggest wheat exporter and which also had a climate much better suited for wheat than for tomatoes.

James Oswald said...

I'm actually impressed by how they avoid saying anything that is outright false. For example, they say that the imports "affect" Canada's economy without saying that they hurt Canada's economy.

Anonymous said...

I wonder why it is that the country that includes the north pole within its boundaries has to import so many vegetables, especially during its long cold winters? Don't the Northwest Territories produce plenty of oranges and tomatoes this time of year? Anyhow, this video makes such a good point that I think the U.S. should ban all imports. I'm sure Canada won't notice since only 75% of their exports come here.

Anonymous said...

This is a problem with self-righteous do-gooder environmentalists, etc, more so than with all Canadians.
The notion of creating mutual wealth through trade can be counter-intuitive to the un-initiated. I've maintained for years that Econ 101 should be a high-school graduation requirement. Really it's a condemnation of the Canadian educational system with it's socialist leanings. You wouldn't believe some of the crap that passes as intellectual discussion up here some times. I almost choked one night watching the CBC National news coverage of the Greek Austerity Riots; when the commentator added that what we were witnessing was a failure of Capitalism!!! (It was the Socialists who borrowed all that cash.)
Peter in NB, Canada

Dave said...

Even the econ 101 requirement might not be enough. We were required to take econ at my high school and it consisted of
1) keeping track of stocks,
2) homework with multiple choice questions that were graded solely on completion.
3) a teacher who was never in the class room.

As you might imagine, there weren't many econ principles learned by students in my high school. And since we were 17 at the time and sick of school, no one ever complained about the class that wasn't really a class.

Steve said...

All of these videos/infographics that have been popping up lately only reinforces in my mind the overabundance of under-employed fine arts majors struggling to find relevance in a world that their education has left them utterly incapable of understanding.

O. said...

Thanks for posting, Michael. Here's a bonus:

"Very informative! Never loose the ability to feed yourself! Hunger is the number 1 oppressor, I can't imagine being at the mercy of a foreign nation if it all goes to hell in a hand basket! Eat local-it's better for your local economy, health, the environment and it tastes better!"

Chris said...

Grand Game Entry!

Low hanging, non-Canadian, fruit right off the bat:

"We may think of ourselves as being totally self-sufficient"

Um...no we don't. Is this the most asinine statement I've ever heard?

I also enjoy seeing Hellmann's sponsoring this garbage. It's not like they (or their parent company Unilever) is a giant multi-national corporation. Egads.

O. said...

For what it's worth, I went through the French education system all my life and took the Economics and Social Sciences curriculum, so I had three years of Econ behind me. Can't say it wasn't what you would expect the French government to think people ought to know (unequal treatment of the unequal was a big thing, and the social question of the 1930s was a big deal), but it wasn't altogether awful; we were taught absolute and comparative advantage. That being said, I was at a private school (they followed the mandated curriculum, but they charged for it in exchange of purportedly competent teachers, and this school was in Canada).

Michael said...

Look at the sneaky fine print at the bottom of the official page:

This website is directed only to Canadian consumers for products and services of Unilever Canada. This website is not directed to US consumers or any other consumer outside Canada.

Do not pay attention to the man behind the curtain, American consumers. Keep buying local and ignore our advice to Canadians to break off commerce with your producers.