The FTC finally released its highly anticipated proposed Principles of Food Marketing to Children today. These principles, which are currently open for comment, apply to children between the ages of 2 and 17 and are slotted to go into effect in 2016.

The proposal is designed to encourage children, through advertising and marketing, to choose foods that make a meaningful contribution to a healthful diet and contain at least one of the following:

  • fruit
  • vegetable
  • whole grain
  • fat-free of low-fat dairy
  • fish
  • extra lean meat or poultry
  • eggs
  • nuts and seeds
  • beans

Additionally, the foods advertised should contain minimal amounts of nutrients that have a negative impact on health or weight, including:

  • saturated fat
  • trans fat
  • added sugars
  • sodium
One thing to note is that these principles are voluntary, not mandatory. Perhaps that’s why there is nothing to be seen about how food companies might be held accountable for their marketing to children. While I think these principles are encouraging, it would be great to see something a little more ballsy. 

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