Eye On Marketers

Marketing has a profound affect on the foods we eat and the beverages we drink, yet most of that marketing is for products we should avoid. BMSG monitors the media to help keep advocates informed of the tactics food and beverage companies use to target children, communities of color, and other groups that are particularly susceptible to the health harms these products cause. Below are archives of our monitoring.
Source: mental_floss
Friday, February 12, 2016

Doritos is using Valentine's Day to market its ketchup-flavored chips in Canada. The company is encouraging people living in certain parts of Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal to forego flowers and give 12 long-stemmed "roses" made of Doritos to their significant others.

Source: LA Times
Tuesday, February 2, 2016

In yet another case of goodwashing, McDonald's has partnered with literacy nonprofit Reading is Fundamental to put books into Happy Meals. The author of this piece misses an opportunity to highlight the absurdity of the situation: while the partnering organizations are claiming to be investing in children's futures, giving books to kids doesn't offset the detrimental health effects of selling them unhealthy food.

Source: BusinessWire
Monday, February 1, 2016

In honor of Black History Month, McDonald's in Atlanta has launched a campaign called "Nuggets of Knowledge," which focuses on highlighting the accomplishments of African American community leaders. This strategic initiative is a typical example of the fast food giant's goodwashing efforts, as the company ironically demonstrates public "support" of African Americans while simultaneously targeting them when marketing their unhealthy food products.  

Source: Food & Wine World.com
Wednesday, January 13, 2016

In a typical example of goodwashing, Frito-Lay is funding a national Black History Month art contest. Strategic acts of generosity such as these are common tactics used by large corporations to distract consumers from the company's otherwise nefarious practices, especially in regards to their ceaseless target marketing of minority communities.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

This article discusses recent research that demonstrates how digital marketing tactics influence children to consume more junk food. Dutch researcher Folkvord argues that although teaching children to be more media savvy would be helpful, the most salient solution would be to enact policy change that would restrict such ads from appearing in children's media environment altogether.

Source: Business Wire
Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Coca-cola announced that it will be contributing $150,000 to the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, building on a 34-year partnership with the organization. In addition to the funding, Coca-Cola will also provide "Educational Toolkits" which include a backpack and a thumb drive with information about navigating the road to college...but only available to those with proof of purchase of a Coke product. 

Source: Portada
Monday, December 14, 2015

Campbell's Soup targets Latino families in this commercial featuring a child asking for Arturito soup. This turns out to be a soup branded with R2D2, a popular Star Wars character, and is aligned with the release of the blockbuster hit. 

Source: PR Newswire - Sourced from Coors Brewing Company
Monday, December 14, 2015

Coor’s Light continued its 25-year relationship with Historically Black Colleges and Universities this year by providing $100,000 in scholarships, and sponsoring six Classics -- college-wide celebrations that center around football. The brand organized tailgate parties in each city featuring live music, celebrities, alcoholic refreshments, and "cooking-with-beer" demonstrations.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Indigenous activists are taking a stand regarding a recent Coca-Cola advertisement aired in Mexico. The ad features a group of young white "philanthropists" bringing bottles of Coca-Cola to an indigenous community in Oaxaca, and constructing a Coke-branded Christmas tree. The ad has been criticized as "colonialist branding," and powerful backlash has forced Coke to pull the ad and apologize.  

Source: Portada
Wednesday, December 2, 2015

McDonald's continues its "Game Time Gold" campaign, which targets Latinos who watch American football. The fast food giant has used sweepstakes, partnered with famous Latino sports commentator Enrique "El Perro" Bermudez, and held weekend "Half-Time Breaks" at select locations to lure Latino customers. 

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