National Food Alliance|
5-11 Worship Street
London EC2A 2BH
Phone: 0171 628 2442
Fax: 0171 628 9329
National Food Alliance
The National Food Alliance has today called on the Secretary of State for
Culture, Media and Sport, Chris Smith MP, to review the regulation of TV
advertising to children by the Independent Television Committee (ITC) and to
consider a ban on food advertising directed at children, particularly
pre-school children. The NFA's call for tougher rules on advertising to
children comes after the judge in the 'McLibel' trial ruled that McDonald's
advertising and marketing exploits susceptible children and encourages them
to pester their parents.
In its letter to the National Heritage Secretary, the NFA says "Our member
organisations, as well as many parents and those concerned with child
welfare, are very unhappy that any company or type of advertising or
promotion should exploit children in this way."
Says NFA co-ordinator, Jeanette Longfield: "Advertising regulation is
fundamentally flawed if it permits the systematic exploitation of children.
The fact that the judge in the 'McLibel' trial has ruled that advertisements
which were cleared for broadcast, do exploit susceptible children suggests
that the current code is not adequately enforced, or that the code is
inadequate to protect children from such exploitation. Either way there
needs to be a considered review of the regulation of all advertising to
children, not just that for McDonald's."
Notes for Editors:
1. Last year an international survey by Consumers International ('A
Spoonful of Sugar') found that the UK had the highest level of advertising
during children's programmes of the nine European countries taking part in
the survey and that McDonald's was the most heavily advertised product.
Some countries, such as Norway and Sweden, do not permit advertising to
children under the age of 12, other European countries have rules which do
more than the UK to limit the amount of advertising to children, while
Australia and Ireland do not allow advertising during programmes for
2. A MORI poll commissioned by the NFA in 1996 found that 65% of parents
with children under 16, want to see tougher restrictions on advertising of
foods and soft drinks to children.
For further information:
Jeanette Longfield / Peta Cottee 0171 628 2442
Dr Mike Rayner 01865 224879