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Parental Influence upon Children’s Diet: The Issue of Category

By Chris Preston


Food and Drink are distributed via corporate institutions in categories, such as ready meals or carbonated drinks. Within these categories a minority of brands advertise, capitalising upon the popularity of the categories. The issue of childhood obesity and health has led to a focus upon these advertised brands in terms of their being targeted at children, but nothing has been done about the categories they represent. Furthermore, parents have an influence upon their children’s diet, as their expenditure accounts for the majority of their children’s consumption.\ud This paper accounts for UK children’s perceptions of the effect of advertising and marketing of food and drink upon their parents, and concludes that they see advertising as having very little influence. Rather they see their parents involvement with certain categories, that have become over time their norm. They do not see that the regulation of advertising of food and drink to children will have any significant effect upon their diet, as their parents will continue to consume from within the categories supplied by the retail sector, which in their view constitutes the most influential aspect of food and drink marketing.\ud Given international focus upon the advertising of food brands, this paper draws attention to other, potentially more influential issues

Year: 2009
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