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Four Years Later, FLOTUS' Let's Move Turns Focus to Food Marketing in Schools

Posted by Sheila Shayon on February 26, 2014 03:11 PM

In celebration of the fourth anniversary of her Let's Move movement, First Lady Michelle Obama is pressing forward on her ambitions to curb junk food marketing to kids. In an announcement with US Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Obama introduced a proposal to ban advertising of sodas and unhealthy snacks in public schools. 

"Our classrooms should be healthy places where kids are not bombarded with ads for junk food," Obama said at a White House event, according to NBC. 

Vilsack said the new rules eliminate marketing for products that can’t be sold in schools. "If you can't sell it, you ought not to be able to market it," noting that companies spend $149 million a year marketing food and drinks to kids in public schools.

According to the FCC, the heaviest marketers are candy and snack food manufacturers and beverage companies and fast-food chains, offering enticements like coupons for pizza for reading books. Still, only two states, California and Connecticut, have banned sodas and junk food from public schools, the former in 2005 and the latter in 2006.Continue reading...

Subway Comes Clean on Chemical In Breads After Activist Outcry

Posted by Dale Buss on February 6, 2014 04:57 PM

Conscious of the concerns of food activists, Subway said that it plans to remove a chemical from its breads that raised the ire of a food blogger. It's the latest health-conscious step by a chain that recently engaged Michelle Obama in a promotion for its new initiative to get kids to put veggies on Subway sandwiches.

In a bid to be more transparent and better keep to its "Eat Fresh" mantra, the largest fast-food chain said it is taking out a chemical known as Azodiacarbonamide from its sandwich breads. Vani Hari, who runs the site FoodBabe.com, has criticized its presence because of the substance's other industrial uses and because it is banned in the UK, Europe and Australia.

Subway has used the ingredient as a "bread conditioner" which adds elasticity and whitens the dough. The chemical, though, is especially damning in the food industry because of its other broad uses in plastics, rubber and synthetic leather production.Continue reading...

Subway Teams with FLOTUS for Kid-Focused Veggie Campaign

Posted by Dale Buss on January 27, 2014 10:45 AM

In the ancient struggle of kids-versus-moms over vegetables, parents have just gotten a potentially significant new ally: Subway. The world's largest QSR chain has committed to investing $41 million behind a new kids' marketing effort whose centerpiece will be an exhortation to "pile on the veggies."

Subway announced that it is joining Michelle Obama and Partnership for a Healthier America in her Let's Move! initiative and utilized the First Lady—as well as other celebrities ranging from olympian Nastia Liukin to the brand's own Jared Fogel—in announcing the package of measures at a Subway close to the White House.

"Our goal is not just to increase veggie consumption," Subway CMO Tony Pace told Advertising Age. The point is "trying to get kids to want to order veggies."Continue reading...

getting by with a little help

Sesame Forgets the Fees, Lends Elmo, Big Bird to FLOTUS for Veggie Campaign

Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 31, 2013 04:43 PM

First Lady Michelle Obama is bringing in the big guns to get kids to eat more fresh produce through her “Let’s Move” campaign. Sesame Street’s Elmo, Rosita, Big Bird and Abby Cadabby are officially on board as Sesame Workshop has waived its licensing fees to the characters for two years making the initiative possible.

“Just imagine what will happen when we take our kids to the grocery store, and they see Elmo and Rosita and the other Sesame Street Muppets they love up and down the produce aisle,” Obama said at a press event. “Imagine what it will be like to have our kids begging us to buy them fruits and vegetables instead of cookies, candy and chips.” Elmo and Rosita joined the first lady in the State Dining Room yesterday for the announcement.

A consortium of Sesame Workshop, the Produce Marketing Association (PMA) and the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) have joined forces to put the Muppets characters—which provide a major source of income for the educational nonprofit—in-store and on sticker labels for fruits and vegetables. "It would be a shame not to use [the characters] to that end," said Sesame Workshop EVP, CEO Sherrie Westin.Continue reading...

media and politics

Food Marketers Convene in Washington as First Lady Continues Health Crusade

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 19, 2013 07:46 PM

Michelle Obama is shamelessly using the power of her pulpit in the best tradition of Dolley Madison, Eleanor Roosevelt and Hilary Clinton, among others. 

The First Lady convened a White House summit that focused on food marketing to kids—a move in line with her ongoing Let's Move initiative and support of healthy food consumption. Members of the media and entertainment executives, food industry representatives and public interest group leaders gathered to discuss curbing junk food ads and restricting iconic kids' TV characters from appearing in spots for unhealthy products.  

“I’m here today with one simple request and that is to do even more and move even faster to market responsibly to our kids,” and to “empower parents instead of undermining them," Obama said in an address to attendeesContinue reading...

campaigns

FLOTUS, PHA Team Up for Plain and Simple Water Campaign

Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 13, 2013 03:58 PM

It’s a campaign so simple, with a product so pure, that the biggest challenge facing it may be keeping its marketing message equally simple.

The Drink Up campaign, formed through a partnership between First Lady Michelle Obama and Partnership for a Healthier America, hopes to encourage the public, especially kids, to drink more plain water. 

"Water is so basic, and because it is so plentiful, sometimes we just forget about it amid all the ads we watch on television and all the messages we receive every day about what to eat and drink," Obama said, according to The Huffington Post. "The truth is, water just gets drowned out."

Obama is an honorary chair of PHA, whom she previously partnered with on a music album about getting healthy. The campaign is a natural fit with her continued Let's Move initiative. The campaign will also be supported by a group of beverage partners that will carry the Drink Up logo on hundreds of millions of packs of bottled water and reusable bottles.Continue reading...

First Lady Michelle Obama Joins Hip-Hop Royalty for Get Healthy Album

Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 14, 2013 07:16 PM

First Lady Michelle Obama has leant her lean muscle and healthier living initiative “Let’s Move!” to a hip-hop album with Partnership for a Healthier America and Hip Hop Public Health.

The 19-track album, “Songs for a Healthier America,” features multi-genre artists including Ashanti, DMC, Jordin Sparks, Doug E. Fresh, Matisyahu, Ariana Grande and Blink-182's Travis Barker, as well as the New York Knicks Iman Schumpert and Nils Lofgren of Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band.Continue reading...

getting by with a little help

Michelle Obama Brings Let's Move to Schools With $50 Million Boost From Nike

Posted by Shirley Brady on February 28, 2013 01:51 PM

Critics feeling that Michelle Obama has been overexposed lately, from presenting at the Oscars to mom-dancing with Jimmy Fallon, will have a hard time critiquing her latest move. The First Lady is expanding Let's Move, her three-year-old initiative to get kids moving and combat childhood obesity, and she's tapping one of the world's leading brands in the "get moving" space—Nike. 

NIKE, Inc. President & CEO Mark Parker joined First Lady Michelle Obama and U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan in Chicago to announce Nike’s $50 million, five-year commitment to help launch a new Let's Move program for schools, an extension of the brand's involvement in the organization's Designed to Move study that found that only one in three American kids are active daily.Continue reading...

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