Brownlie Brothers Limited, trading as juice firm Simply Squeezed, has been fined for breaching the Fair Trading Act in New Zealand.

All six charges relate to a television advertising campaign that ran from March to May 2008 for Simply Squeezed Chilled Orange Juice, which gave the impression that the product was predominantly made from New Zealand squeezed orange juice.

The company was fined US$45,000 in the District Court in Auckland, said the New Zealand Commerce Commission this week. An order for court costs and solicitors fees of $6,780 was also made by the Court in respect of the charges.

Although the advertisement included a statement - 'using local and imported ingredients' - this was in white font and small print and on screen for approximately three seconds.

"Businesses need to take care when designing their marketing and advertising campaigns that the overall message is not misleading or deceptive. Any messages in 'fine print' must correspond with the general claims, be noticeable and be easily read," said Graham Gill, Commerce Commission's Fair Trading branch manager, Auckland.

Simply Squeezed was acquired by Japan's Suntory Holdings in August for an undisclosed fee.