Fast food giant KFC has been forced to pull a television commercial after the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) received eight complaints that it featured sexual harassment and humiliation.

The advertisement for KFC's Zinger Burger shows a man changing clothes on the side of the road while a woman holds up a towel for his privacy, until a passing car approaches, and the woman deliberately drops the towel.

Among the complaints, one viewer wrote that the advert features a scene of "sexual harassment and humiliation" and that the woman's actions are "seemingly portrayed as funny and socially acceptable" by the advertiser.

In response, Restaurant Brands, which operates KFC in New Zealand and Australia, said the advertisement was intended to be a light-hearted situation between a group of friends.


"We apologise if the ad unintentionally breached rule 1 (c) of the advertising standards code. There was absolutely no intention to portray anyone being exploited or degraded."

Restaurant Brands confirmed they have removed the ad from all channels and it will not be played again.

The ASA took no further action against the advertiser, acknowledging Restaurant Brands' co-operative engagement with the process and its self-regulatory action in removing the advertisement.