Spending on U.S. advertising for sugary drinks increases 26% to over $1 billion9 Jul 2020
Beverage companies increased their spending on advertising sugary drinks by 26% to over $1 billion between 2013 and 2018, according to a new study from UConn Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity. This increase in advertising primarily targets communities of color where preschoolers, children and teens are the primary recipients of this messaging.
This increase in advertising dollars was particularly pronounced for television advertising although the rate of viewership decreased during the same period. Exposure to TV ads declined 35% for preschooler (2-5 years), 42% for children between 6 and 11 years, and 52% for teenagers (12-17 years). In spite of the smaller amount of time spent watching the tube, companies still pushed significant marketing dollars through this channel.
Spanish-language TV advertising rose 8% from 2013. The increase was even more stark from 2010 with an 80% jump in advertising dollars for soda, sports drinks and energy drinks on these stations within the past 10 years. PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Dr Pepper Snapple Group, and Innovation Ventures were responsible for 98% of sugary drink and energy drink ad spending through this media.
For Black children, the statistics were also higher than their white counterparts. The report identified Black children as 2.1 times more likely to see sugary drink ads and Black teens 2.3 times more likely to be exposed to these ads.
While the majority of the advertising for sugary beverages is invested in soda brands, sports drinks also saw a significant bump with spending increasing 24% during the time period and advertising for sweetened ice tea rising 66%.
The energy drink category saw a 34% decline in spending and fruit drinks and flavored water categories experienced a 5% reduction in advertising spending.
The report noted, “Despite major beverage companies’ pledges to increase marketing of lower-calorie drinks, sugary drinks continue to represent the vast majority of brands’ advertising expenditures.”
Based on the findings in this study, researchers recommend that beverage manufacturers, retailers, and media companies reduce the marketing of these beverages to support public health. Regular consumption of sugary beverages has been shown to increase the rates of heart disease, type 2 diabestes and even result in death.
"It's well past time for the industry to stop putting profits ahead of our kids' health and put their advertising dollars behind products that contribute to good health rather than undermine it," said researcher Fran Fleming-Milici, in a statement.
Wile Women embraces perimenopause ecosystem with support and education
6 Oct 2023
Wile Women, a US-based direct-to-consumer supplement brand, offers “naturopathic” products designed to address women’s mental health and aims to break the stigma surrounding perimenopause.Read more
Lahori Zeera’s spiced soft drinks ‘resonate with the Indian taste palette’
5 Oct 2023
Indian soda brand Lahori Zeera is on a mission to become the largest non-cola drinks brand in the country with its fruit-based soda drinks, available in flavours such as tamarind, lemon, and black pepper. “The ethnic beverages market in India is unders...Read more
Infant formula contamination: FDA issues warning letter to three US firms
18 Sep 2023
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued warning letters to three infant formula manufacturers – ByHeart, Mead Johnson Nutrition, and Perrigo – urging them to address manufacturing practices to prevent bacterial contamination.Read more
Microwave-safe plastic releases billions of toxic particles into food
24 Aug 2023
Plastic packaging that is labelled as ‘microwave safe’ releases billions of micro- and nano-plastic particles into baby food after being microwaved – and these particles are toxic to human kidney cells, according to a recent study. What does this mean ...Read more
Unilever reduces plastic in Pot Noodle packaging
21 Aug 2023
Unilever is trialling new packaging for its Pot Noodle brand in the UK that is 90% paper and will reduce the use of virgin plastic, it says.Read more
Coffee innovation centres on value, flavour, and sustainability
18 Aug 2023
Innovation in the coffee category is exploding, with brands experimenting with flavour profiles in ready-to-drink (RTD) products, novel packaging formats, and unique brewing processes.Read more
Coca-Cola trials delivery of refillable glass bottles in London
1 Aug 2023
In an effort to make good on commitments to cut back its plastic pollution, Coca-Cola is testing out a new system of delivering, collecting and reusing glass bottles of Coke Zero directly with customers.Read more
How healthy are plant-based drinks in China?
28 Jul 2023
Researchers studying the nutritional content of plant-based protein drinks recommend consumers closely observe nutrition facts and ingredient information.Read more
Additives in US food products up 10% since 2001
18 Jul 2023
New research revealed that 60% of foods purchased by Americans contained technical food additives as of 2019, which was a 10% increase since 2001.Read more
One-fifth of Brazilian whey protein products mislabelled
12 Jul 2023
One fifth of whey protein products sold in Brazil are mislabelled, according to one small survey, as the Latin American trade association ALANUR calls on authorities to act against brands that inappropriately advertise the nutritional attributes of the...Read more