Margo Wootan shared that every day, children are bombarded by marketing of unhealthy food from restaurants, candy companies, and others. On average, children view more than 11 food-related ads everyday, on television alone.
Restaurants are the top food marketers to kids, and their in-store promotions, toy giveaways, television ads, websites, and school-based marketing, play a large role in shaping what children want to eat, as well as shaping what food adults view as appropriate for children. Restaurants have skillfully shaped norms that deem fried-chicken nuggets, burgers, pizza, fries, and sugary drinks as standard, acceptable kid food, when, in reality, kids need the healthiest food.
Not only do children need healthy food during this time of growth and development, but it’s also a time when they form habits for the future. Studies show that repeated exposure to fast food and soda, through marketing, and consumption, cultivates a pattern for future consumption and a preference for those foods. And what kids eat at restaurants matters more than in the past because children get a quarter of their calories from eating out, with families now spending more of their food dollars at restaurants than grocery stores. Read more