AFGC disappointed by Parents Jury awards

Posted by Daniel Palmer on 17th November 2009

The Fame and Shame Awards announcement by the Parents Jury are a “shameless attempt to discredit the industry and the recent success it has achieved, especially in marketing food and beverage products to children”, according to the Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC).

“Parents aren’t easily fooled by this annual propaganda – instead they should be reminded about the important steps industry is taking to make healthier choices easier and to reduce advertising to children in all forms of media,” AFGC Deputy Chief Executive Dr Geoffrey Annison suggested.

Under AFGC’s Responsible Children’s Marketing Initiative, 16 leading food and beverage manufacturers have committed not to advertise to children, unless they promoted healthy dietary choices and a healthy lifestyle consistent with scientific standards.

“While the awards mention healthy eating campaigns, they fail to recognise one of the most important initiatives being driven by the food and grocery manufacturing industry,” Dr Annison said. “Australian food manufacturers have made a strong commitment to providing healthy choices for people, including children – parents groups’ should be recognising this important progress and applauding industry’s efforts.”

The AFGC initiative, which has been running since January this year, ensures children will no longer see advertising for snacks, chips, soft drinks and chocolates on children’s television and other media, including posters in school canteens and company internet sites.

“We believe that industry has a role to advertise healthy food and active lifestyles to children and we welcome government working with us in monitoring this important initiative,” Dr Annison said.