BBB’s Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative Snapshot Shows Industry Changes Working
Arlington, VA – Food and beverage ads accounted for less than a quarter of the ads that aired on television programs directed at children under 12. Most of those ads are from members of the Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative (CFBAI), which means they were for, or included, food groups to encourage – fruits, vegetables, whole grains or low/non fat dairy – and met reasonable limits for calories, sugar, sodium and fat.
“We looked at 31 hours of programming on Nickelodeon during one week in March,” said Elaine D. Kolish, vice president of the Council of Better Business Bureaus and CFBAI director. “Our sample included programs at different times of the day, weekdays and weekends. We were quite pleased with what we found: most of the food ads were from our participants and they were for healthier foods. Notably, there was a 50% increase since 2010 in products containing fruit, vegetables, whole grains, or low/non fat dairy. We also saw, once again, that most of the ads were not for food at all; only 23% of the ads promoted food and beverage items.”
CFBAI’s analysis found there were far more ads on children’s programming for sedentary entertainment – movies, television shows, and video games – than there were for foods.
CFBAI’s “2012 Snapshot” is available online.
NOTE to media: Elaine Kolish is available for media interviews on this topic.
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About the CFBAI. The CFBAI was launched in November 2006 with the goal of shifting the mix of ads to children to include healthier products ─ those with fewer calories, less sodium, sugar and fats, and more nutrient dense. The CFBAI’s participants agree to use science-based nutrition standards to govern their advertising primarily directed to children under 12 (“child-directed advertising”) or not to engage in such advertising. The participants represent the substantial majority of child-directed food advertising on TV. Our focus is on child-directed advertising, not all ads children may see, such as ads on prime time dramas or reality shows, because child-directed ads in children’s programming are designed to be appealing to and persuasive to them.
For more information:
Katherine Hutt, 703-247-9345