This book explores the concern about the dramatic increase in childhood obesity in the United States which has prompted Congress to request that the Federal Trade Commission conduct a study of food and beverage marketing to children and adolescents. The results of that study – an analysis of 2006 expenditures and activities by 44 companies – are presented here. Included are not only the traditional measured media – television, radio, and print, but also activities on the Internet and other new electronic media, as well as previously unmeasured forms of marketing to young people, such as packaging, in-store advertising, event sponsorship, and promotions that take place in schools. Integrated advertising campaigns that combine several of these techniques and often involve cross-promotions – linking a food or beverage to a licensed character, a new movie, or a popular television program, dominate today’s landscape of advertising to youth. The data presented in this book tell the story of food and beverage marketing in a year just preceding, or early in the development of, industry self-regulatory activities designed to reduce or change the profile of such marketing to children. Furthermore, this book, which compiles information not previously assembled or available to the research community, may serve as a benchmark for measuring future progress with respect to these initiatives.
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