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The OPC complained that an ad for Hungry Jack’s Kids Club Meals promoting free Simpsons couch toys with meals breached the ‘Quick Service Restaurant Initiative for Responsible Advertising and Marketing to Children’ (QSRI) because the ad was directed to children, and the advertised meal did not meet the QSRI nutrition criteria. The OPC noted that the Kids Club Meal had not changed since it was held by the ASB to breach the QSRI nutrition criteria. The OPC also complained that the ad breached the ‘premium’s and ‘personalities/characters’ clauses of the QSRI because it promoted free toys and featured licensed characters.
The OPC complained that an ad for Kellogg's LCM bars was directed to children and LCMs are not a healthy snack for children. The ad features primary school-aged children in a schoolyard trying to guess the flavour of an LCM bar. It shows excited children flocking to betting stations to place their bets, and cheering when a boy finally guesses the correct flavour. The ad depicts LCM bars as causing great excitement among young children, and as attracting the attention and envy of a child’s peers.
The OPC complained that an advertisement for Kraft Oreos biscuits, which featured a child and toddler drinking milk and dunking their Oreos cookies, breached the RCMI because it was directed primarily to children, and Oreos are not a healthy dietary choice. The advertisement was also broadcast during programs/movies directed primarily to children (Ice Age, Alvin and the Chipmunks and Bee Movie).
The OPC complained that an ad for Kraft Oreos biscuits, which featured two boys in a schoolyard, who play a game involving pulling apart Oreos and nominating the girl the other boy will have to marry, breached the RCMI because it was directed primarily to children, and Oreos are not a healthy dietary choice.
The OPC complained that the promotion of the Hungry Jack's Kids Club and meals on the Hungry Jack's website, www.hungryjacks.com.au, breached the Quick Service Restaurant Industry Initiative for Responsible Advertising and Marketing to Children (QSRII) because the website is directed to children and meals depicted on the website do not meet the QSRII nutrition criteria.
The OPC complained that the McDonald's Happy Meal website, http://www.happymeal.com.au/, breached the Quick Service Restaurant Industry Initiative for Responsible Advertising and Marketing to Children (QSRII) because the website is directed to children and Happy Meals do not meet the QSRII nutrition criteria.
The OPC complained that the Kraft's Chips Ahoy TV ad breached the Responsible Children's Marketing Initiative (RCMI) because the advertisement was directed to children, was broadcast during programs/movies directed to children (Happy Feet, Power Ranges and Fantastic Four) and because Chips Ahoy do not represent a healthy dietary choice consistent with established scientific or Australian government standards.
The advertisement featured animated cookies driving a car and singing.
A new Obesity Policy Coalition report calls for action to protect children from junk food marketing, as profit-hungry food advertisers exploit loopholes in self-regulatory codes. The report, End the Charade, highlights the failures of self-regulation by the food and advertising industries, exposing sneaky tactics that are resulting in children being bombarded with junk food advertising.
The food industry’s voluntary advertising codes fail to protect children from exposure to unhealthy food advertising. The codes do not apply to the highest rating children’s programs, do not cover all forms of promotion, do not apply to all food advertisers, and contain unclear and inadequate nutrition criteria. Compliance with the codes is not monitored, there are no sanctions for breaches, and provisions of the codes are narrowly interpreted by the Advertising Standards Board. Legislation is needed to protect children from the detrimental effects of unhealthy food advertising.
The Obesity Policy Coalition makes complaints to regulatory and self-regulatory agencies about issues such as food marketing to children.