Advertisement

Journal of Public Health Policy

, Volume 31, Issue 1, pp 59–73 | Cite as

Breakfast cereal industry pledges to self-regulate advertising to youth: Will they improve the marketing landscape?

  • Marlene B SchwartzEmail author
  • Craig Ross
  • Jennifer L Harris
  • David H Jernigan
  • Michael Siegel
  • Joshua Ostroff
  • Kelly D Brownell
Original Article

Abstract

In 2007, the Council of Better Business Bureaus created the Children's Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative to improve the nutritional profile of products marketed to children in the United States. We provide quantitative baseline data describing (a) the amount of child-directed breakfast cereal advertising in 2007; (b) an assessment of the nutritional value for all cereals advertised on television; and (c) the relationship between nutrition quality and child exposure to television advertising for major cereal brands. In 2007, the average American child viewed 757 cereal ads, and 98 per cent of these ads promoted unhealthy cereals that would be prohibited from advertising to children in the United Kingdom. Healthy cereals were advertised in 2007 in the United States, but adults, not children, were predominantly exposed to these ads. These quantitative methods can be used in the future to evaluate the impact of industry self-regulation efforts to improve the marketing landscape.

Keywords

obesity advertising children policy cereal 

References

  1. Story, M. and French, S. (2004) Food advertising and marketing directed at children and adolescents in the U.S. International Journal of Behavior, Nutrition and Physical Activity 1: 3.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Hastings, G. et al (2003) Review of research on the effects of food promotion to children, http://www.foodstandards.gov.uk/multimedia/pdfs/foodpromotiontochildren1.pdf, accessed 20 February 2006.
  3. Harris, J.L., Pomeranz, J.L., Lobstein, T. and Brownell, K.D. (2009) A crisis in the marketplace: How food marketing contributes to childhood obesity and what can be done. Annual Review of Public Health 30: 211–225.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Institute of Medicine. (2006) National academy of sciences, committee on food marketing and the diets of children and youth. In: J.M. McGinnis, J. Gootman and V.I. Kraak (eds.) Food Marketing to Children and Youth: Threat or Opportunity? Washington DC: Institute of Medicine of the National Academies.Google Scholar
  5. Federal Trade Commission. (2007) Children's exposure to TV advertising in 1977 and 2004, http://www.ftc.gov, accessed 22 October 2007.
  6. Powell, L., Szczypka, G., Chaloupka, F. and Braunschweig, C. (2007) Nutritional content of television food advertisements seen by children and adolescents in the united states. Pediatrics 120: 576–583.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Council of Better Business Bureaus. (2008) Children's food and beverage advertising initiative, http://www.bbb.org/us/children-food-beverage-advertising-initiative, accessed 4 January 2010.
  8. Kolish, E.D. and Peeler, C.L. (2008) Changing the landscape of food & beverage advertising: The children's food and beverage advertising initiative in action, http://us.bbb.org/WWWRoot/storage/16/documents/CFBAI/ChildrenF &BInit_Sept21.pdf, accessed 7 October 2008.Google Scholar
  9. Federal Trade Commission. (2008) Marketing food to children and adolescents. A review of industry expenditures, activities, and self-regulation, http://www.ftc.gov, accessed 20 September 2008.
  10. Alvy, L. and Calvert, S. (2008) Food marketing on popular children’s web sites: A content analysis. Journal of the American Dietetic Association (108): 710–713.Google Scholar
  11. Schwartz, M., Vartanian, L., Wharton, C. and Brownell, K. (2008) Examining the nutritional quality of breakfast cereals marketed to children. Journal of the American Dietetic Association 108: 702–705.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Roberts, D.F., Foehr, U.G. and Rideout, V. (2005) Generation M: Media in the Lives of 8–18 Year Olds. A Kaiser Family Foundation Study.Google Scholar
  13. Neilson Media Research Inc. (2007) Ratings and other data contained herin are the copyrighted property of Nielson Media Research, Inc. Unauthorized use of this copyrighted material is expressly prohibited. Violators may be subject ot crimial and civil penalties under federal law (17 usc 101 et seq.). All rights reserved.Google Scholar
  14. Nielsen. (2009) Nielsen TV audience measurement, http://en-us.nielsen.com/tab/product_families/nielsen_tv_audience, accessed 24 September 2009.
  15. Batra, R., Myers, J. and Aaker, D. (1996) Advertising Management, 5th edn. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  16. United Kingdom Food Standards Agency. (2009) Nutrient profiling, www.food.gov.uk/healthiereating/nutres/nutprof/, accessed 11 May 2009.
  17. Ofcom. (2006) Television advertising of food and drink products to children, http://www.ofcom.org.uk/consult/condocs/foodads_new/, accessed March 2006.
  18. Stockley, L., Rayner, M. and Kaur, A. (2007) Nutrient Profiles for Use in Relation to Food Promotion and Children's Diet: Update of 2004 Literature Review. British Heart Foundation Health Promotion Research Group, Department of Public Health, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK.Google Scholar
  19. People ex rel. Lockyer v. R.J. Reynolds tobacco company (116 Cal. App. 4th 1253 2004).Google Scholar
  20. Kellogg Company. (2008) Worldwide marketing and communication guidelines, http://www.kelloggcompany.com/uploadedFiles/KelloggCompany/Corporate _Responsibility/WWWMCG_guidelines.pdf, accessed 22 December 2009.Google Scholar
  21. General Mills. (2009) Commitment: Marketing and advertising, http://www.generalmills.com/corporate/commitment/responsible_advertising.aspx, accessed 25 September 2009.

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marlene B Schwartz
    • 1
  • Craig Ross
    • 2
  • Jennifer L Harris
    • 1
  • David H Jernigan
    • 4
  • Michael Siegel
    • 3
  • Joshua Ostroff
    • 2
  • Kelly D Brownell
    • 1
  1. 1.Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity, Yale UniversityNew HavenUSA
  2. 2.Virtual Media Resources, Inc.NatickUSA
  3. 3.Department of Community Health SciencesBoston University School of Public HealthBostonUSA
  4. 4.Department of HealthBehavior and Society, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public HealthBaltimoreUSA

Personalised recommendations