The Australian Association for National Advertisers (AANA) has announced changes to its regulations, which will further limit advertisements promoting ‘occasional’ food or drinks – otherwise known as treats – to children.
As of 1 November 2021, a new Food and Beverages Code will be introduced by the AANA, raising the definition of a child to under 15 years.
Food and non-alcoholic beverage companies will also now only be able to show ads for occasional foods when children make up 25 per cent or less of the total audience. This figure was previously 35 per cent.
There are additional changes, including:
- the creation of a single unified F&B Code incorporating the previous AANA Code and two other initiatives that covered Quick Service restaurants and packaged foods found in supermarkets and grocery stores;
- the definition of ‘occasional’ foods will now be determined by the application of the Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) Nutrient Profiling Scoring Criterion;
- the new F&B Code will now apply to sponsorships; and
- the new code will incorporate a specific reference to a requirement that only healthier options be marketed to children, so that brand owners do not advertise occasional foods near places where children congregate.
“Where the rules differed, the new AANA F&B Code has either adopted the most stringent measure or introduced a new provision that represents a higher bar,” said AANA’s Director Policy and Regulatory Affairs, Megan McEwin.
The AANA said it will be providing an education campaign for the marketing community in the lead up to these changes coming into effect.
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