Australian parents are joining childhood obesity experts in urging the Federal government to support an international code on the marketing of unhealthy foods and beverages to children to be formally presented to the World Health Assembly in May.
The Parents Jury has teamed up with CHOICE to support a national campaign to pressure government to finally take action about the high levels of junk food marketing our kids are exposed to.
The Parents Jury spokesperson Justine Hodge says The Parents Jury has been actively advocating to substantially reduce the marketing of junk foods to young children for many years. She says that over 70 per cent of Parents Jury members consider unhealthy TV food advertising to be a top priority, while 50 per cent believe other forms of unhealthy food marketing are also of concern.*
“It’s no secret that the marketing and selling of junk food to kids has become big business and this new code is a great step towards developing both a local and international solution to the current childhood obesity epidemic,” Justine said.
Under the proposed code, restrictions will apply to advertisements and promotions where children make up a significant number of the audience – between 6am and 9pm.
Justine Hodge says The Parents Jury thinks it is just as important for non-broadcast media to be considered within the scope of the code.
“This means that the use of personalities, celebrities, free gifts or toys, text message, on pack and in-store promotions would also be banned. Our ultimate goal is for our decision makers and leaders to help create more supportive environments for parents to bring up their children, and a healthy world for our kids to grow up in. We want to see healthier kids and happier parents,” she said.
The Parents Jury is a web-based forum for parents to voice their views and collectively advocate for the improvement of children’s food and physical activity environments. The Parents Jury currently has over 3000 members and is supported by the Australasian Society for the Study of Obesity, Diabetes Australia – Vic, The Cancer Council Australia and its member bodies and VicHealth. Membership is free and open to all Australian parents, grandparents and guardians of children aged under 18 years of age.
Leading childhood expert calls for ban on junk food advertising