Sunday 3 November 2019 10:49 am

Heinz and Unilever advertise on Pornhub, UK's most popular adult website

Unilever and Kraft Heinz, two of the world’s largest consumer goods retailers, have run advertisements on Pornhub, the world’s biggest porn website.

A Sunday Times investigation revealed that earlier this year Unilever, which is behind brands such as Dove, Marmite and Hellman’s mayonnaise, ran a campaign on the site for male grooming company Dollar Shave Club.

Read more: Kraft Heinz restate earnings in wake of employee misconduct

One ad read: “If you use our bathroom products you won’t have to visit this site as much.”

The creative director of Dollar Shave Club, Matt Knapp, said the decision had been taken because Pornhub “had guys’ backs.”

He told marketing magazine Mi3: “It’s not expensive, but interestingly, the exposure that you can get and the impressions are huge.”

Pornhub has 110m daily visits, with 71 per cent of its audience male.

Yesterday Unilever denied knowledge of the campaign, saying that Dollar Shave Club had operational independence. The company also said they would not advertise on the site again:

“This type of content is deeply troubling and we will ensure that none of our brands advertise on Pornhub again, or on any other porn sites.” 

Kraft Heinz, the owner of Capri-Sun and HP Sauce, took over the porn site’s homepage in January for a one-day #FoodPorn campaign to promote Devour, a frozen food brand.

A spokesman said: “The brand was explicitly talking about #Foodporn, which has become a cultural phenomenon on Instagram.”

The investigation also revealed the extent of illegal content on the website, with some videos showing teenagers, and indecent images of children as young as three.

Pornhub says it bans content showing under-18s and removes it, but some of the videos had more than 350,000 views and had been available for three years.

Charity watchdog the Internet Watch Foundation said it had found 47 examples of child sexual abuse material on the website in 2019. In 2017 there were 29 cases and in 2018 there were 42.

Almost half the content was classified as falling into category A, the worst kinds of abuse.

Pornhub said it had a “robust internal policy” for removing offending material, including “expertly-trained human reviewers” and “scanning content to determine whether it is consensual”. 

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Blake White, its vice president, said child sexual abuse made up a tiny proportion of content and the aim was to eradicate it.

Chair of the home affairs select committee Yvette Cooper called for a police investigation, saying: “This material is illegal and dangerous. There is no excuse for complacency or claiming ignorance when children are being put at risk by the proliferation of this poison.”

Main image credit: Getty