From Your Health Journal…..”Most of my regular visitors know one of my favorite sites to plug is called Take Part. I love their site, and always telling people to go there for quality, informative articles. Today’s review comes from this site called, Food Marketers To Kids: You Can Run, But You Can’t Hide by By Steve Holt – who did an excellent job. I encourage all of you to visit the Take Part site (link provided below) to read the complete article. Parents not only have to worry about ads on TV that promote unhealthy eating, now they have to worry about marketing to children on the internet. In a recent report, the FTC found that while overall spending on food marketed to children fell nearly 20 percent between 2006 and 2009, online marketing increased by 50 percent in that same time period. This may be a larger problem, as many children spend more time on their computers than the TV. Why has nothing happened? One of the biggest reasons change has been so minimal in coming to the marketing and nutrition of kids’ foods is that few meaningful standards exist, leaving companies to regulate themselves on a voluntary basis. Please, visit the Take Part web site to read the complete article. It is an important one to read!”
Short snip from the article…..
Television isn’t the only place for companies to pedal their unhealthy wares anymore—online sites and games are the new frontier.
It’s not enough anymore for parents to worry about the food advertising their children see on television. No, food companies have laid claim to new hunting grounds for the hearts, minds and bellies of America’s youth, 32 percent of whom are overweight or obese: the Internet.
In a report published in late December, the FTC found that while overall spending on food marketed to children fell nearly 20 percent between 2006 and 2009, online marketing increased by 50 percent in that same time period.
Food companies spent $1.8 billion to market food to children ages 2-17 in 2009, but the data clearly shows that companies only shifted their marketing bucks away from expensive television ads to media where children are spending more of their time—the Internet and mobile devices.
The sneaky tactics food companies now use online—like embedding junk food advertising in interactive games on popular websites like Nick.com—reach children who are completely unaware they are being targeted, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at Yale University’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.
“There are no controls over online advertising to kids like there are for children’s television,” she says. “Companies can basically advertise any way they want on the Internet. They’re taking advantage of children’s inability to critically review advertising.”
The ubiquitous nature of Internet food ads and their success attracting kids may be startling, but it should come as no surprise. Older youth aged eight to 18 spend as much as seven hours a day online and kids under five use the Internet weekly.
Harris says research has shown that children don’t recognize advertising as well online as when they see it on television, especially when they’re cleverly disguised as games. When food ads are embedded in online games, children may even eat more food—and more junk food in particular. In a study published in late December, Dutch researchers had eight- to 10-year-olds play food- and non-food-related memory games on the Internet and then offered them bowls of jelly candy, chocolate, sliced bananas, and apples. The kids who played the food games ate more of the unhealthy food—and twice as much food overall—than the kids who played non-food games or no game at all.
To read the complete article…..Click here