Spending on U.S. advertising for sugary drinks increases 26% to over $1 billion

9 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.

Spending on U.S. advertising for sugary drinks increases 26% to over $1 billion

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.

Read the Full Study Here

Related news

AB InBev launches organic seltzer under Michelob Ultra brand

AB InBev launches organic seltzer under Michelob Ultra brand

22 Jan 2021

Although it’s only the beginning of 2021, major manufacturers are already gearing up for summertime, and AB InBev is doing so with the launch of its own-brand Michelob Ultra Organic Seltzer. With 80 calories, no sugar and no carbs, this release is a bi...

Read more 
Dry January is soberingly popular in 2021

Dry January is soberingly popular in 2021

19 Jan 2021

Dry January, a month where people commit to going alcohol-free, is setting the stage to be record breaking in 2021. Almost double the number of people (6.5 million up from 3.9 million in 2020) are anticipated to participate this month, according to dat...

Read more 
Pepsi debuts its own “Cocoa” Cola flavor

Pepsi debuts its own “Cocoa” Cola flavor

13 Jan 2021

PepsiCo is fanning the fires of the cola wars with the release of its new Pepsi “Cocoa” Cola flavor. The new soda reportedly has a taste that blends the classic Pepsi soft drink with flavors of hot cocoa and marshmallow.

Read more 
Coca-Cola cuts 2,200 jobs and restructures

Coca-Cola cuts 2,200 jobs and restructures

5 Jan 2021

The saying, new year, new you has a whole new meaning for the soda corporation Coca-Cola that is reducing its workforce by 2,200 people in an effort to restructure and respond to ripple effects from the pandemic. Layoffs and buyouts in the U.S. will co...

Read more 
Plant-based Cure Hydration raises $2.6 million, plans expansion

Plant-based Cure Hydration raises $2.6 million, plans expansion

18 Dec 2020

Functional hydration brand Cure Hydration announced it closed a $2.6 million seed funding round led by led by Lerer Hippeau with additional participation from M3 Ventures, Litani Ventures, Andy Roddick, Nas, Matthew Dellavedova, Philip Krim, co-founder...

Read more 
Finnish coffee brand Meira launches a bio-based sustainable cup

Finnish coffee brand Meira launches a bio-based sustainable cup

11 Dec 2020

Helsinki-based coffee roaster Meira released a new line of coffee called Vallilan Paahtimo with the aim of offering a more sustainable cup of coffee – both inside and out. The coffee is a single-origin, sustainably grown variety that is then packaged i...

Read more 
Abbott launches infant formula with immune component

Abbott launches infant formula with immune component

10 Dec 2020

Infant nutrition company Abbott Nutrition launched its new Similac line Pro-Advance which is its “closest formulation to breast milk” and includes added 2’-FL HMO prebiotic for infant immune support. The company is launching this product in Canada wher...

Read more 
Lactalis moves more brands into Indian market

Lactalis moves more brands into Indian market

8 Dec 2020

French brand Lactalis is expanding its hold in the Indian market through the launch of its UHT toned Lactel milk brand. These one-liter packs are fortified with vitamins A and D will retail for Rs70 ($0.94).

Read more 
Terra Kaffe closes funding for single-serve, podless espresso machine

Terra Kaffe closes funding for single-serve, podless espresso machine

1 Dec 2020

Superautomatic espresso maker Terra Kaffee closed a $4 million funding round with the New York-based venture capital fund The Seed Lab, bringing its total funding to just shy of $5 million since its debut in 2019.

Read more 
Heineken is now brewing its Sol beer with solar

Heineken is now brewing its Sol beer with solar

25 Nov 2020

Heineken is one step closer to its goal of increasing the share of renewable energy in its beverage production to 70% by 2030 with the installation of 9,212 solar panels at its brewery in the Netherlands where it produces Sol beer.

Read more