Late last week brought news that the World Health Organization (WHO) has been working to facilitate a worldwide ban on ads for foods high in sugar, fat and salt intended for children. To that end, the WHO has arranged for a meeting of heads of state to discuss restrictions on ads for foods the WHO considers unhealthy. The conference will take place this September at the United Nations offices in New York.
Reuters says that the WHO has already persuaded Coca-Cola, Mexico's Grupo Bimbo, General Mills, Kellogg, Kraft, McDonald's, Mars, Nestle, Pepsico, Unilever and the World Federation of Advertisers to sign a code of conduct in which they promise not to market their “unhealthy” items to children younger than age 12. The WHO notes that of the 42 million obese children around the world, 35 million are in less-developed countries.
ACSH’s Dr. Elizabeth Whelan wonders how all this happened so under the radar. “Since when’” she asks, “did all these companies agree not to market ‘unhealthy’ products? This type of regulation is troubling in as much as it’s leading to a dichotomy of so-called ‘good food’ and ‘bad food’ in which a handful of experts are deemed qualified to tell us which is which.”
28 minutes ago