Government Abandons Children to Big Food
by Michele Simon
With rising rates of childhood obesity and diabetes, you might think that when the federal government convenes a meeting on how food companies market food to kids, talk of how to regulate industry practices might actually be on the agenda.
But you'd be wrong. Last week, the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Health and Human Services co-hosted a workshop in Washington entitled, Perspectives on Marketing, Self-Regulation, and Childhood Obesity. But what should have been a forum on how to set limits around the marketing of junk food to children turned into a PR opportunity for industry. Senator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) got it right when he said in his opening remarks that "corporate America spends $12 billion a year on food ads to kids because it works."