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Tuesday, 18th June 2013

Europe: Marketing of Foods High in Fat, Salt and Sugar to Children: Update 20122013

Source: World Health Organization

From Press Release:

WHO calls for tighter controls on the marketing to children of foods high in saturated and trans fats, free sugars and salt, in order to fight childhood obesity. Tightening restrictions on marketing is central to this fight, according to a new report from WHO/Europe: “Marketing of foods high in fat, salt and sugar to children”.

Unfortunately, marketing unhealthy food to children has been proven to be disastrously effective. While adults know when they are being targeted by advertising, children cannot distinguish, for example, between advertisements and cartoons. This makes them particularly receptive and vulnerable to messages that lead to unhealthy choices....

The promotion of foods high in saturated and trans fats, free sugars and salt has been recognized for some time as a significant risk factor for childhood obesity and the development of diet-related noncommunicable diseases.

The food industry increasingly uses cheap new marketing channels, such as social media and smart phone apps, specifically to target children. Alongside them, television (TV) is the dominant form of advertising; a large majority of children and adolescents watch TV more than two hours each day on average.

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Having begun his career in academic libraries, Adrian Janes has subsequently worked extensively in public libraries, chiefly in enquiry work as an Information Services librarian. In this role he has had particular responsibility for information from both the UK Government and the European Union. He wrote a detailed report on sources for the latter which was published by FreePint in 2007, and has contributed articles to FreePint and ResourceShelf. He is involved in training in information literacy and the use of online reference resources.

A Contributing Editor to DocuTicker, he also write reviews for Pennyblackmusic.

Adrian can be reached at adrian.janes@freepint.com

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