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The Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative “Self Regulation Creates Significant, Ongoing Progress in Foods Advertised to Children”. Elaine D. Kolish , VP and Director Children’s Food & Beverage Advertising Initiative Council of Better Business Bureaus

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The Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative“Self Regulation Creates Significant, Ongoing Progress in Foods Advertised to Children”

Elaine D. Kolish, VP and Director

Children’s Food & Beverage Advertising Initiative

Council of Better Business Bureaus

White House Convening on Food Marketing to Children

Sept. 18, 2013

The White House

Cfbai goals

  • Respond to IOM/FTC calls for more self regulation

  • Be part of the solution

  • Focus on what foods are advertised to children

    • Use meaningful nutrition standards

  • Bring transparency & accountability to company commitments

  • IOM: Shift the emphasis to foods substantially lower in calories, lower in fats, salt, and added sugars, and higher in nutrient content

Self regulation is dynamic
Self-Regulation Is Dynamic

  • CFBAI Principles announced Nov. 2006

  • Specific commitments announced July 2007

  • Groundbreaking steps & many incremental ones

  • Ongoing, steady improvements in foods

  • New category-specific uniform nutrition criteria will lead to further improvements

Number of participants has grown from 10 to 17 80 food ads on kid s tv
Number of Participants Has Grown (from 10 to 17)~ 80% Food Ads on Kid’s TV

3 No child-directed ads

14 Use nutrition criteria for 100% of child-directed ads


Today we welcome our 18th participant ferrero u s a
Today, we welcome our 18th Participant, Ferrero U.S.A.

4 No child-directed ads

14 Use nutrition criteria for 100% of child-directed ads


Cfbai requirements have evolved since nov 2006 launch
CFBAI Requirements Have Evolved Since Nov. 2006 Launch

  • Raised to 100% (from 50%) commitment for ads for healthier foods or no child-directed ads (Jan. 2010)

    • Dropped “healthy lifestyle messaging” as compliance option

  • Harmonized definitions of “child-directed” advertising substantially (Sept. 2010)

    • Now all use 35% (or smaller %) viewers

    • Those at 50% moved to 35%

  • Adopted CFBAI uniform nutrition criteria to replace company-specific criteria (effective Dec. 31, 2013)

Covered venues have expanded


Covered Venues Have Expanded


(as of 2010)


Video Games




Cfbai monitors and reports on company compliance
CFBAI Monitors and Reports on Company Compliance

  • CFBAI independently monitors TV, print, radio, mobile, Internet

    • TV & websites primary venues

    • Company-owned sites

      • Those reported as child-directed

      • Others to verify reporting

    • Third-party child-directed sites

      • Large list of where companies advertise, media lists of top kid sites, etc.

  • CFBAI scrutinizes company-submitted compliance reports

    • Self assessment is opportunity to detect and correct problems

  • CFBAI will conduct inquiries into complaints

What s changed decline in child directed food ads
What’s Changed: Decline in Child-Directed Food Ads*

Food Ads

Non Food Ads

Ads for sedentary entertainment more prevalent.

*Results for 1977 & 2004 are from an analysis of shows with 50%+ kids in the audience. See Table 5.3 in FTC’s Bureau of Economics Staff Report, “Children’s Exposure to TV Advertising in 1977 and 2004” (2007). The FTC estimated there was a 9% decline in children’s exposure to food ads across all programming. 2013 results are from CFBAI’s analyses of 27.5 hours of children’s TV.

What s changed significant improvements
What’s Changed: Significant Improvements

  • Numerous improvements

    • Hundreds of food recipe improvements or foods created to meet nutrition standards

    • Many foods no longer advertised or discontinued

  • Reductions in sodium, sugars, fats

    • Sodium: Pre-CFBAI some foods with > 900 mg sodium; now highest is 750 (most far less: FDA “healthy” levels used by many)

    • Sugars: Reductions in cereals, yogurts; lower-sugar items sourced

    • Fats: ≤ 2 grams or ≤ 10% calories sat fat general standards and a number of foods reformulated to lower fats to meet limits

  • Reductions in and reasonable limits on calories

    • Calories do not exceed 200, 350, 600 for individual foods, main dishes and meals respectively


What s changed significant improvements1
What’s Changed: Significant Improvements

  • Increased use of fruit and vegetables

    • All “small meals” & “meals” include fruit and/or veg as a side dish, component or in a beverage

  • Many dairy products

    • Yogurt, dairy drinks, low or fat-free milks

  • More whole grains usage (5/12 analysis)

What s changed kids meals are improved
What’s Changed: Kids Meals are Improved

  • Happy Meals now always with apples!

  • 2011: Burger King Corp. now asking what beverage/side wanted

    • Advertised choices include milk, 100% juice, apple slices

    • New oatmeal breakfast meal (with apples and fat-free milk) = total of > 3 servings of F/WG/D (290 calories, 9 grams sugar, 395 mg sodium)

  • 2012: Burger King Corp. & McDonald’s dropped caramel dipping sauces (45-70 kcal)

  • More than 770 million bags of apple slices (equals more than 190 million cups of apples) put into kids’ hands, since March 2012

  • Meal includes small fries (~ 100 calories)

  • Buyer selects entrée & beverage (advertised choices are white or choc milk, or apple juice)

What s not changed tv still king with kids

Recent studies show that TV dominates kids media use in terms of percentage of kids using and duration of use in a typical day

What’s Not Changed: TV Still King with Kids

0-8 Year Olds1

8-10 Year Olds2

Daily Average


1 Common Sense Media, Zero to Eight: Children’s Media Use in AmericaChildren’s Media Use in America (2011).

2 Kaiser Family Foundation, Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8-18-Year-Olds (2010).

Food ads on nick programs july august 2013
Food Ads on Nick Programs: July-August 2013* terms of

966 total ads: 230 ads for foods and beverages (24%)

35 foods and beverages

* 27.5 hours of shows on weekdays and weekend and different times of day.

Nick snapshot cfbai participant foods
Nick Snapshot: terms of CFBAI Participant Foods

Nick snapshot significant improvements
Nick Snapshot: terms of Significant Improvements

  • 79% of foods (19/24) improved or newly created to meet nutrition criteria

  • 80% of grain-based foods (12/15) contain ≥ 8 grams whole grains

Progress on Whole Grain and Sugar in Kid Cereals, 2007-2013 terms of

Whole Grain Increase





























Sugar Reduction






























2007 Whole Grain Level

2007 Sugar Level

2013 Whole Grain Level

2013 Sugar Level

Cfbai s category specific uniform nutrition criteria benefits
CFBAI’s Category-Specific Uniform Nutrition Criteria Benefits

Overall stronger than company-specific criteria

Fill gaps in current participant standards

Eliminate foods qualifying solely on “reduced” claim

Eliminate foods qualifying solely on 100-calorie packaging

Include calorie limits for all categories

Include maximums for nutrients to limit (NTL) & minimums for nutrition components to encourage (NCTE)

NTL: Limits on saturated fat, trans fat, sodium, total sugars

NCTE: Requirements for food groups and/or nutrients (food groups are required in 7 of the 10 categories)

Even more transparent/easier to understand

White Paper explains science and basis for criteria


New criteria will drive further improvements
New Criteria Will Drive Benefits Further Improvements

  • Provides a strong, but reasonable, roadmap for new product development

    • Incremental changes necessary for consumer acceptance

  • Many recipes needed changes — when criteria issued ─ if foods to be advertised in 2014

    • ~ 1/3 of CFBAI-listedproducts in July 2011 failed

    • Affected products in pipeline

    • Some have improved in advance of deadline (e.g., Danimals Smoothies, 25% sugar reduction to 10 from 14 grams)

    • 20% (5/24) in Nick snapshot still need recipe changes if to be advertised in 2014

  • Review planned when 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans issued

Positive government response to self regulation
Positive Government Response Benefits to Self Regulation

FTC & USDA on CFBAI’s Uniform Nutrition Criteria

  • FTC: The CFBAI’s criteria represent “substantial progress” & are “considerably stronger than the status quo.”*

  • USDA: “The new uniform CFBAI nutrition criteria appear to be a step forward in changing the food advertising landscape, while also taking into consideration the feasibility of manufacturers making meaningful changes . . . .”

    *Congressional Subcommittee Hearing on Food Marketing to Children (Oct. 12, 2011)

    FTC on Self Regulation Generally (Dec. 2012 FTC Report)

  • “The food and beverage industry, and in particular the CFBAI, has made major strides since the early days of self-regulation in 2006. The industry has expanded the scope of children’s marketing to which their efforts apply and has strengthened and standardized the nutritional criteria for foods marketing to children. New uniform criteria . . . will likely lead to further improvements in the nutritional quality of foods marketed to children . . . .”

Cartoon network aligning its nutrition standards for licensing with cfbai criteria
Cartoon Network Aligning Its Nutrition Standards for Licensing with CFBAI Criteria

  • Update to 2007 nutrition standards

  • Goes into effect January 2014

  • Applies to favorites including

    • Ben 10

    • Powerpuff Girls

    • Adventure Time

  • Limited exception for special occasion foods (e.g., birthday cakes)

Self regulation is significantly and steadily improving child directed food advertising
Self-Regulation is Significantly Licensing with CFBAI Criteriaand Steadily Improving Child-Directed Food Advertising