This study investigated community attitudes to fast food companies' sponsorship of community events. The aim was to inform future efforts to introduce greater restrictions on these marketing activities to reduce child obesity. While previous research has focused on the sponsorship of sporting events, the present study included all community events and gauged public support for fast food company sponsorships in general as well as specific sponsorship activities such as securing event naming rights, advertising on event premises, and distributing free items to children in the form of food and redeemable vouchers. A large and diverse sample of Western Australian adults (n=2,005) responded to a community attitudes telephone survey that included questions relating to event sponsorship. Almost half of the respondents reported that the promotion of fast foods is inappropriate at community events, and only a third considered it appropriate at events where children are likely to be present. Around twothirds agreed that promoting fast foods at such events sends contradictory messages to children and just a quarter of respondents considered it acceptable for free fast food to be distributed at events or for children to be rewarded for participation with fast food vouchers. The results suggest that efforts to reduce child obesity that involve restrictions on the sponsorship of community events by organisations promoting unhealthy foods may be supported by a substantial proportion of the population.
|Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition
|Published - 2012