Food Advertising to Children

Topics: Nutrition, Advertising, Marketing Pages: 4 (982 words) Published: March 30, 2012
Paper #:152.203

Assignment #:Assignment 1 – Reflective Writing Exercise

Name:O’BYRNE, Debbie


This NZPA article is a summary of a new code of conduct for food advertisers which outlines steps they will take to be socially responsible in the way they advertise food to children. It is a collaborative approach between various stakeholders to find common ground on a solution satisfactory to all.

The government are intervening for a couple of different reasons. Business contributes to the economic wealth of a nation with jobs and taxes (Crane and Matten, 2010) but the costs of healthcare to deal with the impacts of poor nutrition are borne by the government on behalf of the taxpayer. Business also has a moral obligation to repay society for the public resources it utilizes for its' success and with the goals of opposing parties sometimes coming into conflict, it is the role of the government to intervene and act as an arbitrator to mediate between these competing parties. (Ryan, Parker & Brown, 2003) Key cause for concern is the rising epidemic of obesity among children across the globe with marketing to children recognized as a contributing factor (Kelly et al, 2010). In a comparison of 13 countries, NZ consistently rated in the top 3 in 3 categories of advertising unhealthy food to children (Hammond, Wyllie, Casswell, 1999) and while the frequencies of advertising may vary among countries the goal remained consistent – the marketing of unhealthy food products to children (Kelly et al, 2010). As they reiterated, the times and methods chosen to target children with these unhealthy foods, which clearly contradicted nutritional recommendations, made the job of parents to encourage healthy choices very difficult

While I agree with the principle of intervention in this instance, I’m not convinced that self-regulation is going far enough. As Ryan and Brown (2003) point out, the disadvantage to codes of conduct...

References: Bakir, A., Vitell. S. (2010) The Ethics of Food Advertising Targeted Toward Children: Parental Viewpoint. Journal of Business Ethics 91, 299–311
Crane, A., & Matten, D. (2010). Business ethics (3rd ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press
Goldberg, M., Gorn, G., Gibson,W. (1978) TV Messages for Snack and Breakfast Foods: Do they Influence Children’s Preferences? Journal of Consumer Research 5(2) 73-81.
Gorton, D., April 2011, Advertising Food to Children Background Paper, Heart Foundation
Hammond K., Wyllie A., Casswell S. (1999) The extent and nature of televised food advertising to New Zealand children and adolescents. Australia and New Zealand Journal of Public Health;23(1):49-55.
Kelly, B., Halford,J. , Boyland, E., Chapman., Bautista-Castan˜o, I., Berg, C., (……) Summerbell, C. (2010) Television Food Advertising to Children: A Global Perspective. American Journal of Public Health, 100(9), 1730-1736.
Moore, E., Rideout, V. (2007). The Online Marketing of Food to Children: Is It Just Fun and Games? Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 26(2), 202-220.
Ryan, N., Parker, R. & Brown, K. (2003). Government, Business and Society (pp. 2 – 28). Frenchs Forest NSW: Prentice Hall
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