Studies have shown that kids may be exposed to as many as 1000 ads a year on television from fast food chains. Each child … In fight over ads aimed at kids, retailers and food makers count on Trudeau’s ‘evidence-based policy’ promise … WATCH: Where’s the evidence linking junk food ads to obesity?

CBC News

Studies have shown that kids may be exposed to as many as 1000 ads a year on television from fast food chains. Each child … In fight over ads aimed at kidsretailers and food makers count on Trudeau’s ‘evidencebased policy‘ promise … WATCH: Where’s the evidence linking junk food ads to obesity. Read full article… 

Eat This! How Fast Food Marketing Gets You to Buy Junk (and how to fight back)

Tune in to listen to an exclusive interview with Author, Andrea Curtis. Andrea’s latest book

Eat This! How Fast Food Marketing Gets You to Buy Junk (and how to fight back) will be published by Red Deer Press this year. Eat This! is a guide to recognizing the marketing tricks companies use to sell foods and beverages to children. Learn about the increasingly complex and subliminal tactics used to market to kids. Find out what others are doing to combat them, and what you can do to help. Andrea Curtis is an award-winning writer for adults and children. She has a longtime interest in food politics. Joining Andrea, is Malcolm Clark, coordinator of the Children’s Food Campaign, a project of charity Sustain: the alliance for better food and farming, and Helena O’Donnell Project Manager of the Irish Heart Foundation’s advocacy campaign Stop Targeting Kids.

To view or download a PDF copy of the slides, click the links below:

Eat This! Andrea Curtis


The Canadian Landscape of Food and Beverage Marketing to Kids

To view or download a PDF copy of the slides, click this link: The Canadian Landscape of Food and Beverage Marketing to Kids

New Senate bill takes aim at junk food ads directed at kids

CTV News

A proposed amendment to Canada’s Food and Drugs Act would ban the advertising and sales of junk food and sugary drinks to children under the age of 13. Read full article




Ground Breaking Research from the U.K. & Ireland


Click here to download slides from Part 1 of the webinar

Click here to download slides from Part 2 of the webinar

Who’s Feeding the Kids Online? Report can be downloaded here

Obesity in Canada

Sugary Drinks

Sugary Drinks and Marketing to Children and Teens

Sugary drinks are calorically dense, and promote calorie intake and excess weight gain leading to obesity, cardiovascular disease, hypertension and type 2 diabetes. In Canada, a 2007 report noted that 17% of pre-schoolers in Quebec consumed sugary drinks. Twenty percent of male teens drink sugary drinks daily. There is significant scientific evidence to support that decreasing sugary drinks consumption will reduce the prevalence of obesity and obesity-related diseases.

There are concerning childhood obesity rates and obesity-related diseases in Canada; yet, beverage companies continue to market and pursue children and teens to consume sugary drinks. In the USA, 45% of the money spent on marketing to teens is for sugary drinks.

Industry Response:

  • Industry has said that per capita consumption of “ready to drink” soft drinks has dropped over the last 15 years, yet obesity rates remain stable. What they fail to state is that. Industry fail to state that fruit drinks, ice tea, slushies, sports drinks, fountain, energy drinks
  • Industry will also state how concerned they are about children’s health, donations they give and that they are part of the solution. See CSPI’s report Selfish Giving for more information.
  • Industry will argue that physical activity will reduce obesity.
  • Industry argues that consuming sugary drinks is personal responsibility
  • Industry argues that sugar taxes are a job killer and that beverage companies hire a diverse workforce

Promising Policies

  • ŸSafety warning label: drinking beverages with added sugar(s) contributes to obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay
  • Eliminating sugary drinks from kids’ meals or making water or milk the default drink for kids’ meals
  • Increasing the availability of water foundations in schools, recreation centres, hospitals, etc.
  • ŸIncluding fruit juices in the definition of sugary drinks
  • Decreasing portion sizes of sugary drinks
  • Introducing a tax on Sugary Drinks that includes diet drinks and fruit juices. We know from tobacco that when prices rise, consumption decreases.
  • Restricting the marketing of sugary drinks to children and youth

Thank you to our speakers: 

Tom Warshawski is a consultant paediatrician practicing in Kelowna, British Columbia.. Dr. Warshawski spearheaded the development of Sip Smart and is one of the leaders in the development of Screen Smart and of the LiGHT project. The Childhood Obesity Foundation is currently overseeing the implementation of MEND and Shapedown programs across British Columbia.

Roberta Friedman ScM is Director of Public Policy at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity. She educates federal, state and local policy makers and advocacy organizations about food policy and obesity research, and creates resources to help them write and implement effective obesity prevention policies.

Click here to download the PDF version of the webinar slides part 1

Click here to download the PDF version of the webinar slides part 2

See below for the webinar recording: 

Food Dyes, Children’s Behaviour, and Implementations for Policy

Evidence linking food dyes to adverse behaviour in children continues to grow:

  • ŸThree separate meta analyses provide evidence that link food dyes to adverse behaviour in sensitive children
  • When it comes to ADHD, food dyes are likely part of a larger story. There is a small, but real effect on ADHD and other food additives may worsen the problem. Most effects that food dyes had on children were immediate. Research demonstrated that there were behavioural effects on children with and without ADHD. The dose of food dye required to have an effect is not known, but children had effects even with small doses.
  • Eliminating food dyes from children’s diet is a potentially valuable treatment for children with ADHD.

In addition to the above, evidence has linked food dyes to Cancer and allergic reactions:

  • Ÿ Food dyes linked to Cancer: Red 3/erythrosine, Yellow 5/tartrazine, Yellow 6/Sunset Yellow FCF, Red 40/allura red, Caramel, Red 40 – p-cresidine
  • Food dyes linked to allergic reactions – Blue 1/brilliant blue FCF, Red 40/allura red, Yellow 5/tartrazine, Yellow 6/sunset yellow FCF; annatto, carmine, cochineal

Unlike the USA and Canada, foods in the U.K. that contain food dyes, must have a warning label stating that the food dyes may have an adverse effect on activity and attention in children. This has caused many companies to stop putting food dyes into the foods, to prevent having to put a warning label on their food.

Canada is behind the USA when it comes to labeling food dyes. In the USA, food and beverage manufacturers must label each specific colour, while in Canada, simply writing “Colour” in the ingredient is sufficient. This leaves Canadians not knowing the specific food dyes contained in their foods beverages.

Thank you to our speakers:

Dr. Nigg specializes in diagnostic assessment and treatment planning for children with attention and learning disorders. He is a leading expert on ADHD/ADD, and his extensive and ongoing original scientific research in this area helps inform his consultations to families and other clinicians. Dr. Niggs directs the OHSU ADHD and Attention Program where they conduct extensive research to discover the causes of ADHD.

Lisa Y. Lefferts is senior scientist at CSPI and focuses primarily on food additives. She has worked as a public health scientist with public interest organizations for over thirty years.   Currently she is working on a report summarizing the research on behavioral reactions to food dyes and the regulatory response in the U.S. Prior to her work at CSPI, she served on the US Food and Drug Administration Food Advisory Committee that considered the link between artificial food dyes and hyperactivity.

Click here to download the PDF slides from this webinar.

See below for the webinar recording: