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Unhealthy foods sold to children

More than 75% of products made by the top 10 food companies packaged to appeal to children are unhealthy.

Bite Back's second #FuelUsDontFoolUs report is out today! This report looks at whether food giants are using child-appealing tactics responsibly.

James Toop - Chief Executive Bite Back 2030 says: We found that 78% of products with child appealing packaging sold by the 10 biggest food manufacturers are unhealthy. This is despite the fact these companies claim they do not market to children and at a time when the health of 1 in 3 children is at risk from food related ill-health.

Think cartoon characters, unconventional shapes and colours, toys and prizes. Products our young people identified included Kellogg's Froot Loops, M&Ms, Nestle's Smarties yoghurt, PepsiCo's Monster Munch, Mars' M&Ms.

Again as with our previous report, top of the list were Mondelez (58 products) and Ferrero (22 products) for whom 100% of their child-appealing products were unhealthy, Mars was not far behind with 97%. Nestle had the highest number of child appealing products (59) with 56% being unhealthy.

Here are the key findings in more detail:

  1. Out of 262 food products with child-appealing packaging surveyed - including crisps, cereals, ice cream and confectionery - 78% (205) were HFSS and/or met the criteria for a red traffic light label.

  2. Of the ten businesses included in the analysis, we found that for seven of them - Ferrero, Kellogg’s, Mars, Mondelez, Nestlé, Pepsico and Unilever - the majority of their child-appealing products were unhealthy. However the number of unhealthy child appealing products varied significantly, ranging from 58 from Mondelez to 10 from Unilever.

  3. The data showed some businesses are making an effort to use child appealing packing more responsibly. Danone has no child appealing unhealthy products and Kraft Heinz has just one.

Later this morning 3 Bite Back activists will give evidence to the House of Lords Food, Diet & Obesity Committee. They will call on the Government to regulate to stop misleading health claims and manipulative marketing on unhealthy products to protect our children's health.

We are sleepwalking into a preventable health crisis for millions of children. We need companies to act responsibly and Government to introduce regulation which we know many companies want.

Stay up to date and informed.

Register with Bite Back - lets take back control against giant food companies!

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