Home > Publications . Search All . Browse All . Country . Browse PSC Pubs . PSC Report Series

PSC In The News

RSS Feed icon

Smock discusses the "new American family" on NPR

Pfeffer and colleagues re-examine impacts of community college attendance

Frey explains the minority-majority remapping of America

Highlights

Apply for 2-year NICHD Postdoctoral Fellowships that begin September 2015

PSC Fall 2014 Newsletter now available

Martha Bailey and Nicolas Duquette win Cole Prize for article on War on Poverty

Michigan's graduate sociology program tied for 4th with Stanford in USN&WR rankings

Next Brown Bag

Monday, Dec 1
Linda Waite, Health & Well-Being of Adults over 60

Visual communication to children in the supermarket context: Health protective or exploitive?

Archived Abstract of Former PSC Researcher

Berry, Brent, and T. McMullen. 2008. "Visual communication to children in the supermarket context: Health protective or exploitive?" Agriculture and Human Values, 25(3): 333-348.

In light of growing concerns about obesity, Winson (2004, Agriculture and Human Values 21(4): 299-312) calls for more research into the supermarket foodscape as a point of connection between consumers and food choice. In this study, we systematically examine the marketing of ready-to-eat breakfast cereals to children in Toronto, Ontario supermarkets. The supermarket cereal aisle is a relatively unstudied visual collage of competing brands, colors, spokes-characters, and incentives aimed at influencing consumer choice. We found that breakfast cereal products with higher-than-average levels of sugar, refined grains, and trans-fats are more likely to feature child-oriented marketing in the form of spokes-characters, themed cereal shapes/colors, and child incentives on cereal boxes. These forms of visual communication are consistent with a "health exploitive" pattern of targeted marketing to children in the supermarket setting. Only one aspect of visual communication is consistent with a "health protective" pattern of marketing to children-cereals shelved within reach of children aged 4-8 had less sugar per serving and were less likely to contain trans-fats than less reachable products. We discuss the implications of our findings for the measurement and regulation of marketing to children in North American supermarkets.

DOI:10.1007/s10460-007-9110-0 (Full Text)

Browse | Search : All Pubs | Next