Havas Worldwide Paris, Puteaux Follow Update

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Havas Worldwide Paris undertakes to safeguard European food aid and launches an unprecedented viral campaign for public support: The AirFood Project "In a year's time, 18 million Europeans won't be pretending"

October 17, 2012


Havas Worldwide Paris is teaming up with four French charities that help destitute people - Banques Alimentaires, Croix Rouge Française (French Red Cross), Secours Populaire and Restos du Coeur - with a view to safeguarding the European food aid programme that is living on borrowed time. In order to maximise awareness among the public of the need to safeguard the programme helping destitute people that feeds over 18 million very deprived Europeans, Havas Worldwide Paris is today launching an unprecedented participatory campaign for public support. The goal is to influence the decisions of European institutions within three months.


The Airfood Project is an idea for a petition, a website, a video film and a twitter account so as to enable everyone to support the programme.


How does it work ? Be filmed airfooding, which means pretend to eat, act out the eating gestures without any food present, dine with empty plates.... then post the video. The more people take part, i.e. you, your baby, teenage child, your friends etc...who are all filmed while airfooding, the greater the impact of the video. The videos will be put together and posted on the website www.airfoodproject.com where people can also sign a petition for food aid to be maintained or calling on European decision makers via the twitter account https://twitter.com/AirfoodProject.


Under the creative direction of Christophe Coffre, Vice-Chairman of Havas Worldwide Paris, the campaign hopes to reach even more people by publishing a viral film lasting 21/2 mins: participants in Paris, Berlin and Barcelona airfooding in the midst of baffled passers by and restaurant diners. Filmed for the role they play, every now and again the airfooders will show a message on the bottom of their napkin and meal tray…:"In a year's time, 18 million Europeans won't be pretending". A short version of the video will be released shortly on TV channels of TF1, a partner of the campaign.


Christophe Coffre, vice-chairman, proudly expresses his delight having attracted talented participants from Havas Worldwide Paris to the campaign: "There are ideas that can change the world. The power of viral communication, silent videos, the freedom for everyone to create their own event… this European campaign could become a universal movement."


Benoit Viala, deputy managing director specialising in targeted influence communication, commented: "We are proud to be involved in this great European cause. This inspirational campaign shows that influence communication is moving out of its usual box to meet new demands for creativity based on strong ideas that surprise and appeal to everyone. This lobbying campaign, which aims to mobilise European public opinion so as to influence government decisions, also shows the need to design intuitive and simple campaigns that anyone and everyone can identify with. "


About MDP (European food aid programme for most deprived persons)
Voted in 1987 by European institutions, for over 25 years the European food aid programme which represents just €1 per European citizen, provides vital needs for over 18 million very deprived people. To date, 20 out of the 27 EU countries have signed up to the programme. But 7 "unwilling" countries - Germany, Austria, Denmark, Netherlands, Czech Republic, Sweden and UK - want to see this programme removed from the new objectives of the Common Agricultural Policy even going so far as rejecting the very existence of European food aid.