Corporate responsibility.  

Where does it start and end when it comes the over promotion of junk food?

I have been thinking about writing this blog for weeks, but I had to move from a place of frustration to a place of passion, positivity and love first.

I would love to know other people’s thoughts on this topic.

Recently a Happy Healthy Dinner Club member sent me the attached pictures with a frustrated message.  After much internal debate, I thought it is time I sat down and wrote this blog because I am extremely passionate about bringing up the next generation with the correct mindset when it comes to food.

These pictures were taken in the school holidays on July 12th at Coles Willetton WA and my client Emma sent them to me with a message saying, “What are we teaching children when this is what they are greeted with when entering Coles……. Chocolates covering the front of the whole fruit and veggie section, plus balloons to draw their attention to it even more!!” I then responded with a comment stating that I too could not believe it and it was terrible. Emma agreed and went on to say she is finding it hard to remove the processed foods and sugar from her home and the flashing lights and Freddy Frog colouring competition is not helping.

Coles know parents take their kids food shopping on the school holidays, and the fact they have cleverly planed these marketing activities and the over promotion of chocolate in the healthier areas of the store proves they have strategically used the four “P’s” of marketing to increase their add on sales.  This is what makes me frustrated and so passionately driven to find out if others feel the same?

I am sure there are other parents out there who hate it when their children nag for junk (chocolate, lollies & chips) and would love to see a regulation come in that only allows 10% of promotional space in supermarkets to be junk food. If our diet should only be 10% junk (treats) then I think supermarket advertising should resemble this.

The next day on July 13th Emma sent me another message with more photos saying the chocolate was also clip stripped all the way down the frozen food aisle and in the meat department. Her message to me said, “I have the girls with me today and it is hell with them asking every time we walk past it!” She also went on to say that she was lucky she had Gilberts down the road.

With almost one-quarter of children and two-thirds of adults are overweight or obese in Austrailia we should be taking more notice. Metabolic disease rates continue to rise, largely due to a rise in obesity, which cost the economy $8.6 billion in 2011–12. (source listed) it really makes me wonder how supermarkets can continue to get away with this?

My job as a Nutrition & Mindset Coach is to help educate people on better eating habits and in 90% of cases, most people are obese due to their addiction to processed foods and sugary treats. We have normalized packaged foods so much that the general population are not aware of how much “bad food” they are eating. People need to get back to basics and cook more food from scratch eating more wholefoods. With all of the extra sugar and trans fats in processed foods that make up people’s mainstream diets it is no wonder we have an obesity epidemic in Australia and it just blows my mind how Coles can so obviously promote junk food without trying to better educate consumers on health.

I know there are many people out there, including internet trolls who will read this and get on their high horse saying we all have choices, we do not need to buy it and yes I 110% agree but my point is this type of marketing is not setting a good example to our children or making it easier for parents to say no. If people had more will power, we would not be in this mess and I would not have clients coming to me every day asking for help with their sugar cravings.


Client referenced with permission: Happy Healthy Dinner Club Member Emma Reynolds.

Written by Jessica Lowe, Director of Happy Healthy PTY LTD