12:27am Tuesday 17 September 2019

Stopping junk food TV ads before 9pm would help protect kids

Researchers found that although new regulations, which had fully taken effect by 2010, had blocked the majority of junk food TV adverts during child-dedicated programming, the proportion of food advertising for confectionary and full-fat dairy products increased across all programming between 2008 and 2010.

The job of tackling this form of marketing has been left half baked

As the majority of children’s viewing takes place outside of child-dedicated programming, the researchers from Liverpool said the impact of the regulations was limited.

Joseph Clift, our Policy Manager, said: “Judging by this research, junk food marketing regulations haven’t had much of an effect on the programming children actually watch.

“It’s not entirely surprising because the job of tackling this form of marketing has been left half baked. We need to better protect children by ensuring all TV and radio advertising of junk food is scheduled after 9pm. We also need new rules to close the loophole which allows products outlawed on children’s TV to be marketed to young people online and in print.”

The research was presented at the European Congress of Obesity.

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