Wednesday, April 18, 2007

The Global Kids Food Ads Revolution

Philip M. Stone, of, reports on a recent announcement by Canadian food and beverage companies "that 15 of its biggest companies will devote at least 50% of their ads directed to children under 12 to promote healthy food choices and how to live an active life." A series of PSAs will also be produced under the umbrella brand "Long Live Kids"...think "Participaction" for a new generation. Stone's article goes on to discuss regulatory developments worldwide (stating "Junk food has replaced tobacco as the young’s Public Enemy #1"), focusing in on the UK (obviously) and US in particular, but also mentions Chile, which I haven't really heard much about until now. The article also links to a number of background documents, which may be useful if you're interested in following the kids' food ads "revolution".

Meanwhile, the FTC is preparing to serve food and beverages companies in the US with "compulsory requests for information" on their children's marketing and advertising practices. Said
FTC Chairman Deborah Platt Majoras, in a speech to the Food and Drug Law Institute given last week (cited in the AdAge article):
"We hope to get a more complete picture of marketing techniques for which publicly available data have so far been lacking. This effort is exploring not only traditional TV, print and radio advertising, but will provide an analysis of all of the many other ways that the industry reaches children -- through in-store promotions, events, packaging, the internet and product placement in video games, movies and television programs."

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