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Heart and Stroke Foundation breaks awareness campaign

The Toronto-based Heart and Stroke Foundation has begun a new advertising campaign intended to raise awareness of proposed federal legislation that would restrict food and beverage marketing aimed at children. The campaign features a ficticious advertising agency called 16 and Under that exclusively produces advertising for children. The creative is shot in a documentary style intended to highlight the ways food and beverage advertisers target children. The campaign consists of digital elements, out-of-home advertising and social media activities, as well as a website at <>.

"We know kids have a lot of influence when it comes to household food choices, but because they're young, they're impressionable and easily influenced, and we wanted to shine a light on these tactics," said Geoff Craig, chief marketing and communications officer at the foundation. "Childhood obesity rates have tripled in the last 30 years, and advertising has a role in that. Marketers know that 90 percent of food and beverage purchases are driven by kids. They rely on persuasion power, also known as the nag factor, as kids pester their parents for certain products. This campaign is meant to rally support around the issue for the sake of Canada's kids."

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