The University of Michigan News
New research claims that blanket exposure to promotional material for unhealthy foods is encouraging children to eat badly around the world. 100 schoolchildren in seven countries were asked by researchers from University College London to film themselves and the food they eat for a study about the exposure of children to unhealthy diets. The accompanying policy-analysis shows that policy responses to address diet-related non-communicable diseases remain largely inadequate with responses anchored around individual behaviour change and personal responsibility.
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Seventy percent of teens surveyed report engaging with food and beverage brands on social media and 35 percent engaged with at least five brands, according to a new study from the UConn Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity published in the journal Appetite. The study found that 93 percent of the brands that teens reported engaging with on social media were fast food, unhealthy snack foods, candy, and sugary drinks. Read the article here
Center for Science in the Public Interest
A new analysis of 72 hours of children’s television programming in 2018 found that junk-food marketing has not decreased since 2012. The vast majority of the food and beverage advertisements captured were for unhealthy products. The lack of progress comes despite the implementation in 2013 of uniform nutrition standards by an industry self-regulatory group.
New York Times
Nearly two-thirds of the $2.2 billion in beverages marketed to children in 2018 contained added sweeteners, according to a report released last week by the Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity at the University of Connecticut. The report found that the packaging and marketing of these products often leave parents confused. Read the New York Times article here.
Bite Back 2030 has been set up as an “unstoppable movement” of young people in the UK. Backed by chef Jamie Oliver, the aim is to halve childhood obesity in the UK by 2030. Read the article here.
Excerpts: Re: push-back on restricting Tony the Tiger || “This was a 50-year-old man talking about how important Tony the Tiger was. It just tells me how powerful [advertising] was, that even today, he has an emotional connection to that cartoon character… [t]hey know if they get brand loyalty at an early age they have a customer for life” – former Senator Nancy Greene Raine
“Half of food and drink advertisements children see on television are for junk food, sugary drinks and outlets such as McDonald’s, prompting fresh calls for tougher action to limit exposure to them.
The research from the Institute for Fiscal Studies comes amid calls for the government to impose much tougher restrictions on the ability of food manufacturers and retailers to advertise junk foods as part of a crackdown on childhood obesity”.