The Advertising Code for Foods (RVV) stipulates that child idols may not appear in advertising for food products aimed at children. Regarding idols, think of figures borrowed from popular cartoons or games, so-called “licensed media characters”. And the rules are not only in place to protect children, but also to protect parents. Because which parent can withstand their child asking for those sweets in the supermarket for the tenth time in a row?
Foodwatch, an organisation that exposes deception and child marketing, filed a complaint with the RCC after encountering popular child idols Peppa Pig and Paw Patrol on FruitFunk packaging and in online advertisements. According to Foodwatch, FruitFunk violates the children’s marketing rules.
FruitFunk defended itself by saying that they had been in touch with the Nutrition Centre, and they called the product a ‘responsible snack’. The The Advertising Code for Foods says that the ‘idol ban’ does not apply if the government or another recognised authority in the field of nutrition supports the advertising.
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It’s about the advertising, not the product
However, the RCC didn’t fall for it. The Nutrition Centre only commented on the product itself and not on the Peppa Pig advertising for that product, according to the RCC. The advertising itself is therefore not supported by the Nutrition Centre, and therefore the exception does not apply.
FruitFunk is not allowed to lure children using idols in their marketing. The company has since withdrawn the guilty products from the market, and they are no longer for sale.
Our tip for you
Take note of the marketing rules for children’s products when developing packaging, online promotions on your website or social media campaigns! Pay particular attention to the use of child idols; it’s not permitted.
And, in any case, don’t make the food too tasty for the little ones!