Unethical Marketing of Children's Lunchbox Foods

Topics: Potato chip, Marketing, Lay's Pages: 4 (872 words) Published: August 1, 2008
Unethical Marketing of Children's Lunchbox Foods
Brilliantly marketed highly salty foods are being deliberately targeted for our children's lunchboxes. According to Consensus Action on Salt and Health (CASH)1 the promotion of extremely high salt foods targeted at school lunchboxes is an unethical marketing practice. Four out of five items surveyed by CASH used a combination of at least three marketing techniques to specifically aim at children. "The use of marketing practices targeted at children to sell highly salted products is unethical." says Registered Nutritionist and Chartered Marketer, Kathy Lewis of Consensus Action on Salt and Health. "Ethical practices are aimed to ensure a sustained market. Although promotional techniques are used to encourage usage by a particular target audience, they should not be used on those that are vulnerable and at such a crucial stage of health and development." According to consumer marketing reports2 the average lunchbox consists of savoury sandwiches, a processed snack product and drink. The combined total expenditure for sandwiches, savouries and snack products is more than £8 b per year3. Such a typical lunchbox meal adds up to approximately 3 g of salt4, equivalent to the total target daily salt intake for a 4 - 6 year old.5 CASH surveyed 23 items used in children's lunchboxes. Over 80% used a combination of marketing techniques, including packaging, positioning, promotion and price, to enhance sales. The worst cases surveyed,, using up to a combination of 10 marketing techniques on one product, included 'Attack-a-snack' (2.5 g/portion) 'Walker's Crisps'(1 g /packet) and the recently launched 'Stackem's' (2.3 g per pack). Each used a combination of marketing techniques specifically aimed at children and busy parents. These included; • web-based promotions, such as design your own dairy-lea movie or an interactive web-enabled competition; •text-messages;

competitions, such as win a year's pocket money
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