Why we do what we do... | Veggiecation© a Culinary-Nutrition Education Program About Vegetables
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Thursday, 10 October 2013 17:22

Why we do what we do...

To paint a picture of the current food marketing campaign in the US, here a few facts:

 

  • The food and beverage industry spends approximately $2 billion per year on marketing to children. (Source Prevention Institute)
  • Kids watch an average of over 10 food-related ads every day. (Source Prevention Institute)
  • Nearly all (98%) of food advertisements viewed by children are for products that are high in fat, sugar, or sodium.  (Source Prevention Institute)

 

Shocking isn’t?  We sure think so.  With numbers like this, it’s no surprise that we are facing a time when obesity and diabetes in young children is so rampant.  The current movement towards educating our youth about food and encouraging them to be active has grown out of necessity.  According to the CDC, the prevalence of obesity in children and adolescents has tripled since 1980. 

 

That is a dramatic increase.  It is exactly why educational programs, advocacy groups, and health initiatives have sprung to action – we can’t afford to keep ignoring this pressing issue.

The facts presented earlier illustrate the amount of effort and dollars that works against the movement towards enlightening our youth about health.  Time and time again, the food industry has been rightfully criticized for the lack of precaution it takes when marketing to young children who are easily swayed by cartoon characters, celebrity/athletic endorsers, and prizes.  The reality is, the food industry is a self-regulating entity that doesn’t regulate it’s own marketing in an ethical way.  There are no government guidelines in place to make sure that they do.   

 

Our solution to this specific problem is to fight the food industry using some of the same methods that they, themselves, implement.  Veggiecation was originally founded on the premise that vegetables needed a marketing campaign to counter attack the junk food advertisements that children face on a daily basis.  As our founder, Lisa Suriano, always says, “Fighting fire with fire!”

 

Here are some the ways in which we have fought back:

  • Counter attack the food campaigns with vegetable campaigns 
  • Offer the “I Tried It” sticker as a reward for courageous eaters 
  • Promote the health benefits of vegetables most relevant to young minds and bodies
  • Actively involve children in the cooking process and develop culinary skills and confidence at young age

 

You can fight back too! Be sure to make thoughtful dietary decisions for you and your family.  Choose and serve foods that are enjoyable and healthful for you and your little ones! 

 

 

Love the links?  Click here!

http://www.preventioninstitute.org/focus-areas/supporting-healthy-food-a-activity/supporting-healthy-food-and-activity-environments-advocacy/get-involved-were-not-buying-it/735-were-not-buying-it-the-facts-on-junk-food-marketing-and-kids.html

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