Report on Cereal Companies: Increase in Nutritional Quality Matched By Increase In Child-Directed Advertising Of Least Nutritious Products

Continuing with the theme of child-directed marketing, the Yale Rudd Center for Food Policy &  Obesity has just released its latest Cereal FACTS report.  The key finding is that “cereal companies have improved the nutritional quality of most cereals marketed directly to children, but they also have increased advertising to children for many of their least nutritious products.” 

The title of the report is “Limited progress in the nutrition quality and marketing of children’s cereals.”   Notably, the conclusion of the report states as follows:

The bottom line is that General Mills, Kellogg, and Post continue to aggressively target children with advertising for products such as Reese’s Puffs, Froot Loops, and Pebbles that rank at the bottom of their products in nutrition and at the top in added sugar.  The majority of cereal advertisements that children see on TV (53%) promote products consisting of one-third or more sugar.   One 30-gram serving of these cereals contains as much sugar as 30 grams of Chips Ahoy cookies (3 cookies).  Just 12% of the cereal TV ads viewed by children promote products with 26% or less sugar, compared with nearly one-half of ads seen by adults.  Although the 9 or 10 grams of sugar per serving in children’s cereals today is less than the 14 or 15 grams these products contained six years ago, they are still high-sugar products that children should not consume regularly. 

See the full report here.

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