Ovo Energy apologises after telling customers to ‘cuddle pets’ to stay warm

Ovo Energy's headquarters in Bristol. Credit: Google Maps

One of Britain's largest energy suppliers has apologised after it suggested customers cuddle pets and eat porridge to stay warm.

Ovo Energy said it was “embarrassed” after sending the advice in a blog “containing energy-saving tips” to its SSE customers.

The company, which is based in Bristol, described it as “poorly judged and unhelpful”.

It was removed following criticism, including from North Bristol MP Darren Jones.

The now-deleted blog advised customers to cuddle pets and eat porridge to stay warm.

'We are embarrassed'

In a statement, an Ovo spokesperson said: "Last week a link to a blog containing energy saving tips was sent to customers. We understand how difficult the situation will be for many of our customers this year.

"We are working hard to find meaningful solutions as we approach this energy crisis, and we recognise that the content of this blog was poorly judged and unhelpful.

"We are embarrassed and sincerely apologise."

The blog was posted on a now-deleted SSE webpage, which offered tips on how customers could stay warm this winter.

Ovo Energy has since apologised for the blog post.

The advice included wearing extra layers, eating porridge and cuddling pets.

Speaking to the Financial Times, which first reported the story, Mr Jones, chair of the Commons business select committee, called the advice "insensitive".

"Being told to put on a jumper instead of turning on your heating if you can't afford it, at a time of such difficulty for so many families, is plainly offensive," the Labour MP told the newspaper.

In a tweet following Ovo Energy's apology, Mr Jones said: "Good, I'm glad they apologised. 

“I'm not sure who signed off a marketing campaign telling people to wear a jumper and eat porridge instead of turning on the heating if you can't afford it."