Monday, November 07, 2005

Posters Displaying Typical Ingredients In Fast Food Used To Educate Kids

The British Heart Foundation wants to shock kids into eating better

How'd you like to sink your teeth into a freshly-made burger full of scrumptious portions of gristle, bone and animal tissue?

The British Heart Foundation (BHF) hopes that nasty image printed on over 600,000 posters all across the UK will help educate children and deter them from mindlessly consuming foods that they have no idea what it is made of. Interestingly, these posters show the raw ingredients that are often found in many fast foods like hamburgers, chicken nuggets and hot dogs.

An awareness campaign called Food4Thought found that more than a third of 8-14 year olds had no clue what the main ingredient in potato chips was (it's potatoes, of course, but some children answered oil, eggs, apples, and flour). Additionally, another nearly 4 in ten of them did not know that milk was the primary item that comprised cheese.

BHF Director General Peter Hollins said this greatly disturbs him and shines a light on the ignorance of children in regards to good nutrition.

"It sends a shiver down my spine to discover that so many children don't even know what chips are made of," Hollins exclaimed. "Kids have lost touch with even the most basic foods and no longer understand what they are eating."

The BHF will be asking for Prime Minister Tony Blair's assistance for funding and using British celebrities to help counter the excessive marketing of junk food and drinks.

British health officials are concerned that obesity is continuing to grow among youngsters, with one-fourth of them expected to be overweight in less than 15 years.

Hollins said there needs to be a sense of urgency about pro-actively dealing with this problem now before it gets any worse.

"This campaign is about talking to children in their language and sparking their curiosity so that they think about what they eat and start demanding healthier options," he said.

What about in the United States? Would huge billboards of raw animal parts inside of a burger bun turn off kids from eating fast food? In the short run, probably not. But I am a big believer in incrementalism. A little bit here, a little bit there. Slowly but surely, you could change the thought process of kids just enough so they would think before they eat. And that would be a wonderful thing, don't you think?

Otherwise, could this be what a typical American kid looks like in the not-too-distant future? Let's hope and pray we never get to this point:


Blogger Kent said...

What there are animal products and tissues (like muscle) inside my burger? The horror! I see this as more than just anti-fastfood, which is an extremely easy scapegoat, but an attack on meat eating in general. Sorry can't share the villiany look at McDonald's -- they are there to make a buck as cheaply as possible, but that is not a bad thing. Attacking burgers as a gross thing, however, is a step over the line.

11/07/2005 11:10 AM  

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