Explores the reasons behind parents’ food purchases for their children, relating this to the part that advertising is alleged to play in the purchase of unhealthy food, and in particular the issue of “pester power” or the nag factor. Reports a study of 1530 families in the UK sponsored by the Food Advertising Unit, which explored the questions of whether parents know enough about healthy diets, how they react to pestering, what they think about advertising to children, and the relation of income level to attitudes. Finds that parents do have reservations about advertising to children, with most of them feeling that advertisers manipulate children; but at the same time parents accept this as a fact of life in a consumer society and still feel that they have more influence on their children than do the advertisers.
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