TAKE ACTION: Is That Macaroni & Cheese Talking to Your Kid? Stop Grocery Shelf TV Ads!

Parents to Supermarkets:  Pull the Plug on In-Store TV Ads

"Having TV screens all over the grocery stores undermines my parenting! You simply cannot avoid the presence of television! Not only are they getting to play their ads for our kids, but they are sending the message that it is normal to stare at a screen all day...in the car, at the store, in school...It's truly sickening." - CCFC member Samantha Penrose, mother of three, Urbana, IL

The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood is demanding that the Food Lion supermarket chain pull the plug on 3GTv, a controversial new marketing scheme that airs commercials on mini-televisions attached to grocery store shelves — right next to the product being advertised. This fall, Food Lion and Automated Media Services will conduct a trial of 3GTv in several of its Bloom supermarkets in Maryland and Virginia. A successful test run is likely to have nation-wide consequences, spurring other grocery stores to follow suit.

That’s why CCFC is urging parents, regardless of where they live and shop, to petition Food Lion to shelve its on-shelf commercials.

“When screen-based advertising invades the public sphere, even the most vigilant parents can’t protect children from it,” said CCFC’s Director, Dr. Susan Linn. “It’s time to challenge the notion that marketers have a right to fill every nook and cranny of our lives with televisions and their blaring commercials. If we don’t stop 3GTv now, families will be forced to run a gauntlet of TV advertising in every aisle of every supermarket around the country.”

Televisions at the supermarket checkout counter are already common, exploiting a captive audience waiting in line to pay for groceries. But 3GTv, developed by Automated Media Services, ups the ante. At the exact moment families are making purchasing decisions, in-your-face TV ads will undercut parental authority by compelling children to lobby for the product being advertised.

TAKE ACTION

Do you agree that families have a right to grocery shop without be forced to run a gauntlet of screens blasting commercials in every aisle? Take a moment to tell Food Lion executive Carol Herndon to pull the pull the plug on its grocery store TVs. Click here to find out how.

New Research: Food Industry Self-Regulations For Marketing to Children Are Not Working

Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood writes:

In 2008, many of the nation’s major food companies formed the Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative (CFBAI) in an effort to stave off government regulation. The CFBAI was supposed to improve the food environment for children by having companies adopt voluntary—and self-defined—guidelines for marketing food and beverages to children. We, and many other advocates, were understandably skeptical that self-regulation would end the barrage of junk food marketing aimed at children. Two recent studies demonstrate that these fears where well founded.

In December, research released by Children Now (pdf) conclusively demonstrated that the food industry’s self-regulation efforts have failed to significantly improve the nutritional quality of foods marketed to children. And a new study by the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity (pdf) finds that in-store promotions aimed at children – such as the use of licensed characters on packaging – are increasing dramatically. And the nutritional quality of the items marketed through these cross-promotions actually declined over the course of the three-year study.

Is there anyone not on a food company payroll who honestly believes the food industry will shape up on its own?

Click here to find out more about Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood.

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