July 2nd, 2012
Report finds that sugary cereals marketed to Hispanic children more than any ethnic group
By Nina Terrero
It’s a common scenario in households across the country. The television is on as background noise while mom and dad are occupied elsewhere while Junior is playing on the floor with a puzzle or blocks. Suddenly, Junior lifts his head at the glimpse of a cheery cartoon character chomping on a themed cereal. He asks mami to pick some up on the next shopping trip – and that’s exactly what sugary cereal companies are bargaining for, in a new report that shows that cereal marketing is aimed more towards Hispanic youth more than any other ethnic or racial group.
The 2012 “Cereal FACTS” report, published by the Yale Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity, has unearthed several startling facts regarding how Hispanic children have become the target of big brand advertising.
“There’s been a lot of attention in marketing press about the spending power of Hispanic and African-American audiences – it’s only been until recently that companies have tapped into it,” says lead author Jennifer Harris, PhD, MBA, an associate research scientist at Yale University. “And the bottom line is while cereal companies have made small changes in the nutritional content in their products over time, they are disproportionately aiming their advertising at the growing numbers of Hispanic children rather than non-Hispanic children.”