Advertising to Children

1:16 PM, 18 September 2013

The unfortunate reality of our industry is that fears surrounding advertising food and beverages to children on television are grossly overplayed. By way of example, a recent study from the University of Otago claimed that 60% of preschoolers’ parents are worried about the amount of targeted advertising their children are exposed to on television. While the research has not been published, its quality must be questioned, and is done so by Katherine Rich - Food and Grocery Council CEO. 

"It would be interesting to know what questions the parents in the survey were asked, because there is currently no advertising on television targeting preschoolers.” In fact no advertising, sponsorship or prize packs are allowed during pre-school television programming.

So what are the facts?

Under our self-regulatory approach, the “Getting it Right for Children” industry commitment allows for no advertising pre-school time zones. Advertising in school-age children’s programme times is also strictly limited.

In addition, any foods or beverages advertised in this zone must be independently approved under a Children’s Food (CF) classification against nutrient profiling standards.

The result is Nielsen reported that just 6% of advertising in children’s time zones in 2012, were of food products. This includes advertisements imbued with positive messages such as the 5+ a Day campaign and sponsored community safety and activity campaigns.

So what is the issue? With the responsible self-regulatory boundaries industry has committed to, ANZA believe the facts show that industry is taking its community responsibilities seriously. Regrettably those against advertising to children are prepared to ignore this reality.

Click here to download the free booklet ‘Advertising on Television - Getting it Right for Children’  

Click here if you’re interested in reading more about the University of Otago’s survey on Dunedin.

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