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BizReport : Advertising archives : March 15, 2016

Junk food advertising is a cue to consume to children online

Since 2006, junk food ads on UK television have been banned during children's Saturday morning programming, along with certain other children's programming. Now, advertisers could be made to cease advertising unhealthy foods alongside children's content online, too.

by Helen Leggatt

The UK's Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) is to launch a public consultation regarding the online advertising to children of junk, or unhealthy, food. The move would see the loophole, that allows ads to be shown alongside children's online shows, but not those shown on television, to be closed.

Guy Parker, the chief executive of the Advertising Standards Authority, speaking at the Westminster Food & Nutrition Forum seminar, said there was "a growing consensus about the role of advertising, self-regulation helping to bring about change in the nature and balance of food advertising to children".

A recent meta study of 22 studies that consider the correlation between food marketing and food intake concluded that "acute exposure to food advertising increases food intake in children but not in adults. These data support public health policy action that seeks to reduce children's exposure to unhealthy food advertising". The findings suggested that online ads for unhealthy food were just as likely to have the same effect as those on television.

Image via Shutterstock

Tags: advertising, children, food industry, online, television

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