We can probably all agree that marketing junk foods to kids a an awful idea. But we can also agree that marketing foods to kids works. FoodFacts.com wonders if, instead of throwing out the baby with the bath water, we shouldn’t just change the baby? Michelle Obama has a jump on that one.
Five years ago, First Lady Michelle Obama launched the Let’s Move campaign, which sought to reduce childhood obesity and get kids eating healthier. She’s taken aim at school lunches and encouraged more activity and water consumption. Now she wants more pushback on unhealthy-food advertisements aimed at kids — and celebrities are on board to help.
“If folks are going to pour money into marketing unhealthy foods,” she said at an event Thursday in Washington, “then let’s fight back with ads for healthy foods, right? Let’s do this.”
Obama spoke at the Partnership for a Healthier America Summit, where the organization announced the launch of FNV, a marketing campaign laser-focused on branding fruits and vegetables (hence the name “FNV”) as cool to youth. The Partnership for a Healthier America, known as PHA, was created in conjunction with the First Lady’s Let’s Move campaign in 2010, though the organization is independent from the White House.
A PHA statement details how the campaign will feature appearances from actresses Kristen Bell and Jessica Alba, athletes Stephen Curry and Cam Newton and more.
“FNV was inspired by big consumer brands, whose tactics are relentless, compelling, catchy and drive an emotional connection with their products,” said PHA CEO Lawrence A. Soler in a statement. “We want to do the same thing for fruits and veggies, which have never had an opportunity to act like a big brand. Until now.”
Maybe broccoli needs a jingle. Carrots could have a viral video. Left in the hands of professionals who work on transforming the images of big brands in our country, it really is possible that this could have a far-reaching effect on our kids. Let’s move fruits and vegetables into the same category of cool as bad food. Whether or not we like admitting it, advertising and marketing start trends, define products and influence consumers. Maybe we should start using it for things that really matter.