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Mapping the effect of healthy and unhealthy food and beverages marketing: two decades of bibliometric analysis

Yukti Sharma (Department of Marketing, Goa Institute of Management, Sattari, India)
Prakrit Silal (Department of IT Systems and Analytics, Indian Institute of Management Jammu, Jammu, India)

European Journal of Marketing

ISSN: 0309-0566

Article publication date: 15 November 2022

Issue publication date: 4 January 2023




With multiple theoretical traditions, diverse topical landscape and rapid regulatory advancements galvanising the ongoing discourse, the emergent marketing scholarship on healthy and unhealthy food and beverages (F&B) has become exhaustive, fragmented and almost non-navigable. Accordingly, this study aims to synthesise and trace two decades of research focused on healthy and unhealthy F&B marketing.


This study conducts a bibliometric analysis of papers published between 2000 and 2020. The data was retrieved from Web of Science (WoS) and Scopus, yielding 338 papers for final analysis. Using VOSviewer software and the Biblioshiny package, the authors performed a detailed bibliometric analysis comprising performance analysis and science mapping.


The study delineated the contribution, theoretical and thematic structure of healthy and unhealthy F&B marketing scholarship. The authors also mapped the evolution trajectory of the thematic structure, which helped us contemplate the research gaps.

Research limitations/implications

By delving deeper into the “who”, “where”, “how”, “what” and “when” of healthy and unhealthy F&B marketing, the study enhances the current understandings and future developments for both theorists and practitioners. However, the selection of literature is confined to peer-reviewed papers available in WoS and Scopus.

Practical implications

The findings delineate the existing scholarship which could guide F&B marketers and policymakers towards designing consumer-centric marketing/policy interventions.


To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this study is the first to perform a bibliometric analysis of healthy and unhealthy F&B marketing, likely to provide valuable guidelines for future scholars, policymakers and practitioners.



The authors thank the Editor, Associate Editor and reviewers for their valuable comments and suggestions, which helped significantly improve the overall quality of the research.


Sharma, Y. and Silal, P. (2023), "Mapping the effect of healthy and unhealthy food and beverages marketing: two decades of bibliometric analysis", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 57 No. 1, pp. 149-184.



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