Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Sporting Stars encourage junk food consumption

Sporting Stars encourage junk food consumption
February 15, 2011

An Australian study has found parents are easily persuaded to buy junk food for their children if it is endorsed by a sporting celebrity.

The investigation into junk food marketing was conducted by the Obesity Policy Coalition (OPC), which is made up of groups like the Cancer Council of Victoria. It is published in the journal, Public Health Nutrition.

The online study asked more than 1,500 parents which products they would buy.

They were asked to choose between an unhealthy product and a comparable but healthier alternative based on the packaging.

The parents surveyed clearly preferred packets that made claims about nutrients, like source of fibre, but they were even more convinced when a well-known sportsperson endorsed the food - whether it was a cereal, flavoured milk or chicken nuggets.

OPC spokesperson Jane Martin says the power of celebrity was clear in parents' decision making, stating "for people who didn't read the nutrient information panel, they were much more likely to choose a less healthy product - twice as likely in fact to choose the less healthy product - if it had a nutrient claim and nearly two-and-a-half times more likely to choose the product if it had the sport celebrity endorsement.

"The sporting celebrity really conferred a whole lot of things onto the food.

"Parents thought that the product was more healthy, that it was better quality, and they were more likely to say that they would buy.

"So it really does have a huge impact on what people perceive the product really is."

Martin says the survey results make the Obesity Policy Coalition even more keen to see the recommendations of a recent food labelling review acted on, adding "the recommendation was that multiple traffic lights are put on the front of packaged food.

"That would mean that if a product was high in salt, fat or sugar it would have a label on the front of the pack which was red if it was high, amber if it was medium and green if it was low.

"That would help cut through some of this marketing spin."

Martin says claims about nutrition content should also only be placed on food which is healthy overall, adding that those pushing for labelling reform are expecting strong resistance from food manufacturers.

"In Europe, where a traffic light system was proposed, more than $1 billion was spent fighting it by the food industry and we would expect that that would happen here.

"Government has said they're going to take a year to respond to the recommendations of labelling logic which certainly allows industry a long time to have an influence."

For more information go to www.nutritionsociety.org/node/239


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

SENtag

Developed in Europe, this innovative system offers a safety management solution for swimming pools that checks individual swimmers via their wristband - monitoring their depth and time. Sensors…

read more

Aquatics / Hospitality / Safety / Technology / Waterparks

 
 

GEOFF NINNES FONG AND PARTNERS

Geoff Ninnes Fong & Partners (GNFP) is a structural, aquatic and civil engineering consultancy with broad experience in the design of new municipal and institutional swimming pools, hydrotherapy…

read more

Aquatics / Consultants / Design / Venues

 
 

HIDROPLAY

Hidroplay welcomes you to the exciting world of children's Playscapes, waterslide's and Water Attractions. Appealing to families, Hidroplay increases patronage in your facility during those…

read more

Aquatics / Play / Recreation

 
 

AAC ID SOLUTIONS

AAC ID Solutions is a leading supplier of identification access wristbands, barcoded wristband tickets, lanyards, membership products and RFID solutions for events and venues, working with thousands…

read more

Access / Marketing / Safety / Ticketing

 
 

Hadley/Series Australia Pty Ltd

Hadley Australia and Series Australia Pty Ltd are the leading quality theatre chair manufacturers in the southern hemisphere. The businesses work closely with architects, interior designers and…

read more

Arts / Culture / Design / Entertainment / Venues

 
 

GreeneDesk

Track. Engage. Retain GreeneDesk is a suite of cloud based software solutions helping health clubs, leisure centres and swim schools to effectively track progression, improve customer engagement and…

read more

Aquatics / Billing / Education / Fitness / Technology

 
 

DEBITSUCCESS

Over the past 10 years Debitsuccess has been providing expert billing services to businesses across Australia. Debitsuccess is now the largest full service direct debit provider in Australasia,…

read more

Billing / Finance / Fitness / Golf / Recreation

 
 

Sportybots

We are the leading providers of kids fun multi-sports programs for Sport and Recreation Centres. Programs cover twelve common sports as well as Gross Motor Skill Development and suit children from as…

read more

Fitness / Play / Recreation / Sport / Wellness

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business