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Oct 21, 2009



Real talk Mr T, it's not on. I was more than happy taking a loaf of bread as it was funny, something to Twitter about and pretty much aimless. Hovis could be doing something more immediate and innovative to make a difference - handing out loaves of bread, a staple in our dietary routine, to rich wanker bankers and various media types means little in the grand scheme of things. Do something positive and clever - sure people would jump over themselves to pick up a loaf of bread, but I doubt many have gone to good use [see above image]. What did they expect us to do with them?

chris B

What a pile of wank... who on earth dreamt this pile of misguided wank up? They could at least filled the bags with loaf shaped sponges for the bankers to clean themselves up with the help of Hovis's pure goodness. I just don't get it... have i missed something here?


God whatever next?
So mcu hwastage, this country is a joke!

mark / one way photo

The people who took it and then discarded it as just as bad as the marketing people that decided to hand it out in the financial district in first place.

Ian J

Does my head in this sort of crap! Saying that, there isnt anything wrong with taking a loaf and then giving it to a homeless dude, that's what i would have done.


Why are we still surprised to see there are no ethics in this game of brands?
It wasn't about giving free bread, it was about marketing and publicity.
Now we should not forget there is some graphic design involved in the process, and it ends up conforting those unethical brands, and finally ends up on the floor wasted.

There is a waste from the day they started created those horrible loafs of so called bread anyway... I boycott Hovis and equivalent brands.
Let's promote and help local artisans, bakers, fishmongers, butchers...
What happened to people, why did let them all close their shops??

Ian J

@Stan...one word...TESCO!

Neil Martin

What an unfortunate marketing attempt. That photo really gets the point across about wastage.

I completely agree with Mark though about people discarding the loaves. I think that may actually be worse than giving them out. To take and then throw away an entire loaf of bread is disgusting.


Biting my lip.


Discarded...or simply left for the less fortunate.

(Yes, yes, not funny).


I could've done with a free loaf of bread as I only have 50p to last me the next week.


They could have boosted their public opinion much more by not just giving out a loaf of bread to homeless people, but handmade sandwiches made with their bread. Marketing/agency idea fail, in this case...

Does anyone have contact info for the people responsible for this, or the people at Hovis? Maybe we can convince them to make a donation to a homeless shelter, to make up for their wastage :)


It would have been excellent PR to donate it to people who needed it, as you say. Their aim in handing it out to financially stable people was to begin to cultivate a sense of obligation, then brand loyalty, to potential new customers. "Here's something for free, remember us next time you're hungry." It's a valid and common business model, but then it's contradicted by the emotionally evocative image of food lying discarded on the street. Now they appear as a nuisance or irresponsible stewards of the community, and an unsavory connotation is drawn to their logo.

They really, really should've gone with the charity.


They're giving away free bread online, if anyone needs some - http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/deals/supermarket-coupons#bread


Anyone who lives in Hackney or Forest Gate or Ilford or Clapton or any of the surrounding deprived areas also passes through Liverpool Street station (since there is no tube in those areas), so a high proportion of station users are in fact ordinary Londoners, some of them quite poor.

So I think you're getting a little carried away with the populist rhetoric here.

Kevin Murray

Great points, i totally agree.


Here here Graham.


I think this is a great piece of marketing. Check you all out wanking on about how god awful this was, and how we should be sending out loaves of Hovis to those who truly need it. Wank, wank, wank.

How many of you pick up a free paper when travelling home in the evening? Do you disgard it on the tube once you're done? I bet you do you bloody polar bear killing, rain forest chopping doo gooders.

I say give the bankers their free bread. Let them cast it to one-side if they so wish. Who gives a fuck. Do you think Hovis handing out bread to homeless people is really going to have the desired effect? That's really going to push their sales up.

Max Gadney



i also find this disgusting. great post ben.

Nick Kay


Neil Martin

"Dear Mr Martin

Thank you for your email regarding our current bread promotion.

Our Brand Team advise that our aim was to encourage consumers to try for themselves how great Hovis Soft White bread is, hence we offered consumers a free loaf of bread along with a coupon for money off their next purchase. It's a pretty standard marketing tactic and is generally well received by consumers (no risk trial).

Liverpool Street station was chosen as a venue not because of its location in the financial district, but because its a very busy station and offers us access to a great deal of consumers - of all walks of life, age, financial means, etc. Bread is eaten by over 90% of people in the UK and white bread accounts for roughly 60% of all bread eaten so by choosing busy areas such as this, you're automatically getting to lots of white bread buyers.

Our sampling staff would never force anyone to take samples and indeed in all the sampling we've seen to date, we actually end up with queue's of people wanting to try a free loaf of Hovis. We're clearly very disappointed that loaves were left behind and discarded which I agree is not good.

Julie Kralyic
PA to Marketing and Sales Directors"

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