Health news
Health news top Health news

   Login  |  Register    
Health News Make AMN Your Home PageDiscussion BoardsAdvanced Search ToolMedical RSS/XML News FeedHealth news
  You are here : > Health Centers > Food & Nutrition - Public Health -
Spending on food advertising to kids fell in ‘09 - U.S. FTC Spending on food advertising to kids fell in ‘09 - U.S. FTC

Spending on food advertising to kids fell in ‘09 - U.S. FTC

Food & Nutrition • • Public HealthDec 21, 2012

Food companies spent considerably less to advertise to children in 2009 than they did in 2006 as they shifted to the Internet, and products pitched to kids got slightly healthier, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission said in a report on Friday.

Cereal makers, fast food restaurants and other food companies spent $1.79 billion to advertise to children aged 2 to 17 in 2009, down almost 20 percent, on an inflation-adjusted basis, from $2.1 billion three years earlier, the FTC said.

But that drop did not come necessarily because companies advertised less, but because they spent less on expensive television advertising and 50 percent more on cheaper online marketing, the FTC said.

Ninety percent of the 48 companies surveyed reported doing some online marketing, the FTC said. The agency did not identify the companies.

The FTC also found “modest nutritional improvements” in the foods advertised to children, in categories including cereals, drinks and fast-food kids’ meals.

Cereals advertised to children had a small drop in sugar content and used more whole grains, while fast-food restaurants advertised fewer unhealthy products, the FTC said.

But beverages remained an issue since the FTC found that drinks marketed to children had an average of more than 20 grams of added sugar per serving. That is slightly less than a candy bar.

The FTC praised the Better Business Bureau’s Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative for making “major strides” in self-regulation, but urged more progress.

The CFBAI has nudged its members to improve foods advertised to children, and said that cereals in particular were better than those several years ago.

“This is an incremental process. As self-regulation has matured, it’s gotten more robust but, yes, there’s room for improvement,” said CFBAI Director Elaine Kolish.

But health advocates have been unimpressed with the food industry’s efforts to reduce fat, sugar and salt in foods.

“Companies still aren’t doing nearly enough to support parents and protect kids,” said Margo Wootan, director of nutrition policy for the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

She was particularly critical of industry’s decision to allow companies to advertise popsicles and fruit roll-ups to children. “The overwhelming majority of marketing is for foods that will compromise children’s health,” she said.

The issue is a source of concern since about 17 percent of U.S. children and teens are obese and another 15 percent are overweight, according to 2010 data by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The Obama administration, with its goal of containing healthcare costs, has emphasized children’s health. First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign encourages children to eat healthier food and exercise more.

Several government agencies, including the FTC, lost a pitched battle last year to have the companies voluntarily end all advertising to children unless the food being promoted was healthy fare such as whole grains, fresh fruits or vegetables.


By Diane Bartz


Provided by ArmMed Media

Spending on food advertising to kids fell in ‘09 - U.S. FTC Bookmark this! Spending on food advertising to kids fell in ‘09 - U.S. FTC


We are pleased to let readers post comments about an article. Please increase the credibility of your post by including your full name and email.

All comments are reviewed by our editors before they are posted on the site. Just keep it clean, kids. Commenting is not available in this weblog entry.

   [advanced search]   
What health info have you recently searched for online?
Disease or condition
Exercise or fitness
Diet, nutrition or vitamins
None of the above

Get free support - Headache Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment on

Health Centers


Health news

Health Encyclopedia

Diseases & Conditions

Drugs & Medications

Health Tools

Health Tools

   Health newsletter


   Medical Links

   RSS/XML News Feed


Add to Yahoo RSS News Feed

Google Reader


This website is accredited by Health On the Net Foundation. Click to verify. We comply with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information:
Verify here.