Irish Heart have launched a campaign enlisting public support to force action restricting junk food marketing directed at children, particularly on social media.
The Stop Targeting Kids campaign is seeking to sign up 30,000 supporters to back its call for Government intervention to protect children’s health through strict controls, particularly on digital marketing,
They say such marketing remains unregulated in spite of clear evidence of its influence over children’s food choices.
The new campaign is based around the use of fake sweet, crisps and cola brands to expose the tactics used by junk food and drinks companies to influence children and the proximity their brands have to young people, often without the knowledge of parents.
Irish Heart’s Head of Advocacy Chris Macey said: “The purpose of our campaign is to show parents how multinational junk brands can follow their children wherever they go – in school, at home and even in their bedrooms through their smart phones.
“It’s almost like your child has their own individual marketer following them around. They get onto children’s newsfeeds and interact like real friends.
“But all these marketers really want to do is encourage children to consume as much junk as possible, regardless of the impact on their health. These often hidden tactics are almost impossible for parents to see.”
To learn more and sign the petition, go to irishheart.ie.