Thursday, November 20, 2014

Beverage Companies Spent $866 Million Advertising Unhealthy Drinks Last Year Alone Heavily Targeted Children and Teens

Beverage Companies Spent $866 Million Advertising Unhealthy Drinks Last Year Alone
Heavily Targeted Children and Teens

WASHINGTON, DC— Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) issued the following statement today in response to the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity’s report on sugary drink nutrition and marketing, Sugary Drink FACTS 2014.

“Over the past 30 years we have seen a substantial increase in obesity and diabetes in the United States, a trend that is particularly alarming among our children. Research shows that food and beverage marketing is an important factor contributing to children’s poor diets, obesity and diabetes, and undermines parents’ influence on their children’s diet and healthy eating. The associated medical expenses are driving healthcare costs higher and even reducing the number of potential military recruits. And this report makes clear that beverage companies continue to aggressively target advertising of unhealthy drinks to our children and adolescents.

“This is atrocious. We must keep working to address the dual epidemics of diabetes and obesity and the evidence is clear that sugar-sweetened beverages are a key contributor to the problem. The Federal Trade Commission has reported that the overwhelming majority of foods and beverages marketed to children are of poor nutritional quality. The agency must continue its important work so we know where to focus our resources. The Interagency Working Group on Food Marketed to Children has issued guidelines for the food industry’s marketing methods, which aim to help children make healthier food choices. The Rudd Center’s report provides further evidence that we must do more to address this public health issue.”

DeLauro has introduced legislation (H.R. 2831) which would end deductions for marketing food of poor nutritional quality directed at children and the SWEET Act (H.R. 5279) which would impose a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages.

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