Australian study shows that advertising is not a contributor to obesity


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Results of an Ipsos study released by the Australian Association of National Advertisers (AANA) shows that advertising does not influence parental decisions for children's diet. The results say that parents think they are well informed to make sensible decisions about their children's diet and do not view advertising as influential or as a significant contributor to obesity levels.

The study was conducted in April 2012 and looked at the views of over 500 parents in Australia on the causes of obesity and on the ways to address the problem. It found that only 3% of parents named advertising as one of the top influences on the type of food they purchased, far behind nutritional value (31%), price (26%), nutrition and taste (17%) and taste only (16%).

Other findings from the study:
  • Around 70% of parents do not believe advertising has any influence over their food and beverage purchase decisions.
  • 92 % say that they have the ultimate responsibility for what their children eat and drink.
  • Less than 10% felt they were not confident of making informed decisions about food and beverage choices for their children.
  • Around 25% believe the responsibility for their children's health education should be shared with the government.
  • 78% parents acknowledge the importance of a 'balanced diet' and 70% the importance of 'exercise' for their children's health.
  • Parents were most often named contributor to overweight problems in children aged 14 years and younger, followed by food.

For more information on the survey, please contact Scott McClellan (

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