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Public Health. 2017 Sep;150:121-129. doi: 10.1016/j.puhe.2017.05.013. Epub 2017 Jul 1.

Evaluation of compliance with the Spanish Code of self-regulation of food and drinks advertising directed at children under the age of 12 years in Spain, 2012.

Author information

1
Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Heath, Complutense University of Madrid, Pza. Ramón y Cajal, S/N. Ciudad Universitaria, 28040, Madrid, Spain. Electronic address: karimenleonf@gmail.com.
2
National School of Public Health, Institute of Health Carlos III, Calle Sinesio Delgado, 4, 28029, Madrid, Spain.
3
Health and Research Canarian Fund, Department of Evaluation and Planning of Canary Island Health Service, Hospital Univ. de Canarias, Pl. -1
Crta. La Cuesta-Taco, 38320, La Laguna, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain.
4
Department of Applied Epidemiology, National Center of Epidemiology, Calle de Sinesio Delgado 10, 28029, Madrid, Spain.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To evaluate compliance levels with the Spanish Code of self-regulation of food and drinks advertising directed at children under the age of 12 years (Publicidad, Actividad, Obesidad, Salud [PAOS] Code) in 2012; and compare these against the figures for 2008.

STUDY DESIGN:

Cross-sectional study.

METHODS:

Television advertisements of food and drinks (AFD) were recorded over 7 days in 2012 (8am-midnight) of five Spanish channels popular to children. AFD were classified as core (nutrient-rich/low-calorie products), non-core (nutrient-poor/rich-calorie products) or miscellaneous. Compliance with each standard of the PAOS Code was evaluated. AFD were deemed to be fully compliant when it met all the standards.

RESULTS:

Two thousand five hundred and eighty-two AFDs came within the purview of the PAOS Code. Some of the standards that registered the highest levels of non-compliance were those regulating the suitability of the information presented (79.4%) and those prohibiting the use of characters popular with children (25%). Overall non-compliance with the Code was greater in 2012 than in 2008 (88.3% vs 49.3%). Non-compliance was highest for advertisements screened on children's/youth channels (92.3% vs. 81.5%; P < 0.001) and for those aired outside the enhanced protection time slot (89.3% vs. 86%; P = 0.015).

CONCLUSIONS:

Non-compliance with the PAOS Code is higher than for 2008. Given the lack of effectiveness of self-regulation, a statutory system should be adopted to ban AFD directed at minors, or at least restrict it to healthy products.

KEYWORDS:

Childhood obesity; Children; Food advertising; Marketing

PMID:
28675833
DOI:
10.1016/j.puhe.2017.05.013
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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