The extent and nature of television food advertising to children in Xi’an, China.
Sommaire de l'article
To explore the extent and nature of television food advertising especially unhealthy food advertising to primary school children in Xi'an, China.
Television data were recorded for 2 weekdays and 2 weekend days between 6:00 and 22:00 during May and June in 2012 from a total of five television channels most popular with children in Xi'an. Pearson χ (2) tests and logistic regression were applied to determine differences in the proportion of healthy food, unhealthy food and miscellaneous food advertisements for different channels, programs, dates, viewing periods and the use of persuasive marketing tactics.
Of the 5527 advertisements transcribed, 25.5 % were for food, among which 48.1 % were considered to be unhealthy. The frequency of food advertisements was 6 per hour per channel, including 3 unhealthy food advertisements. Compared with healthy and miscellaneous food advertisements, more unhealthy food advertisements were shown during afternoon, weekends and children's non-peak viewing times as well as on children's television channels, central television channels and non-children's programmes. Unhealthy foods contributed the highest proportion of all food advertisements containing promotional characters (51.7 %) and premium offers (59.1 %). Both promotional characters and premium offers appeared more on non-children's television channels.
The majority of food advertisements were for unhealthy food. More unhealthy food ads were shown in children's non-peak time and afternoon as well as non-children's channels. More children-oriented persuasive marketing tactics were used in unhealthy food ads especially in non-children's channels. Therefore, intervening in the entrance of unhealthy foods into the market and establishing regulations related to food advertising especially unhealthy food advertisements are important strategies to prevent children's exposure to unhealthy food and childhood obesity.