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health matters

Walmart's "Great for You" Icon Promotes Healthier Food Choices

Posted by Mark J. Miller on February 9, 2012 10:02 AM

The Food and Drug Administration said in 2009 that it was going to develop standards for what food products can claim to be healthy and what can’t. But there hasn’t been any kind of report as of yet, and Walmart has decided to stop waiting and make one of its own.

A year after pledging to develop a front-of-pack label that would give its customers an easier way to identify healthier food, and a month after a public commitment with First Lady Michelle Obama to putting nutrition front and center in its stores, the nation’s largest food retailer this week unveiled a “Great For You” icon to create a visual system to educate customers.

The Arkansas-based grocery behemoth announced this week that the seal will appear on a variety of house brand food items, with a WalmartGreatforYou.com website supporting the effort.

The green and white seal, "which shows the stylized outline of a human figure with its arms spread toward the sky, is part of a multiyear campaign the world’s largest retailer is undertaking to promote healthier products and fight childhood obesity," the Associated Press reports.

Walmart says it will adapt to whatever the FDA’s regulations are whenever that list actually is produced, but will for now add the icon to products with lower levels of fat, sugar, and artificial additives. Plus, the seal will appear on signage in the fruits and vegetable section of its grocery area.

“It helps customers see very, very quickly what healthier choices are for them,” stated Andrea Thomas, SVP of sustainability for Wal-Mart Stores. More details are in its press release below.Continue reading...

chew on this

SunChips All-Natural? One Man Doesn’t Think So

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 31, 2012 06:07 PM

If you get all puffed up with double scoops of self-righteousness whenever you put your pennies toward munchies with “all-natural ingredients,” such as Frito-Lay’s Tostitos or now-quieter SunChips, instead of the alternative, a New York man is suggesting that you might want to chill out.

New Yorker Chris Shake has filed a “proposed class-action lawsuit” that claims “snacks actually contain corn and oils made from genetically engineered plants.” Shake says in the suit that he paid an extra dime per ounce so he could have all-natural products, but then “independent testing conducted on samples of Frito-Lay products labeled ‘all natural’ uncovered the presence of ingredients — including corn and vegetable oils — made from genetically modified plants,” according to Reuters.Continue reading...

package design

Kangaroo Cigarette Pack Swings at Australia’s Tobacco Laws

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 31, 2012 11:01 AM

Australia is getting tough with tobacco companies. The government there recently voted to ban branded packaging for cigarettes and only allow them to be sold in plain packages that only contain graphic warnings against smoking.

Several tobacco companies have taken legal action against the law and now a different form of payback has emerged: British American Tobacco's Winfield brand cigarettes sold in France “feature a picture of a kangaroo on the front, with a map of Australia and the words ‘An Australian Favourite,’” according to the Telegraph. The health warning, "Fumer tue," translated to "Smoking Kills."

The Aussie packaging, of course, is not sitting well with Australia’s Health Minister, Nicola Roxon.

“Many Australians are going to be outraged that a big tobacco company all the way round the world is using Australia's healthy lifestyle to market their deadly products," she stated. "What I think it's really showing is the sneaky levels that tobacco companies will go to encourage people to buy their products."

The legal case against the Australian government is set to be heard in April.

The Australian Society for Kangaroo Lovers probably isn’t happy about it, either.


Brands Risk Consumer Fallout From Green Logo Overload

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 26, 2012 12:29 PM

As the world becomes more and more aware of environmental issues, pretty much everybody and their brother is thinking globally and acting locally.

And marketers, of course, have taken plenty of notice and are more than willing to share just how great their product is for the environment or how great the production of their product is good for the environment (or at least isn’t that harmful). The incredible growth of these little notices to consumers, which generally come in the form of stickers of symbols and little logos stuck to their products, are starting to seemingly mean nothing.

The Seattle Times notes that the government has not set up “one central eco-labeling system” because it “would be extremely expensive and complicated to operate.” Instead, there are numerous eco-labeling programs that are generally dedicated to one industry.Continue reading...

sip on this

Sneak Peek: David Guetta's Club Coke 2012 Bottle

Posted by Shirley Brady on January 18, 2012 10:51 AM

French music producer and DJ David Guetta expands his marketing partnership with Coca-Cola with a limited-edition bottle called Club Coke 2012, which will be unveiled at the NRJ Music Awards in Cannes on January 28th. Coke has released a sneak peek above.

branding together

Diet Coke Sees Fashionable Benefit to Co-Branding

Posted by Michael Waltzer on January 13, 2012 03:05 PM

Returning with their "Love it Light" campaign, Diet Coke is releasing 3 new can designs in Europe and the UK while partnering with Benefit Cosmetics, the American beauty products brand. As show above, the cans will feature floral, zebra and houndstooth prints in female face profiles.

In a new commercial for the campaign (below), the three marionettes from Diet Coke UK's 2010 Love It Light campaign (Eleanor, Bernadette, and Irene) make their return — shown fighting for the last can of Diet Coke in the fridge by explaining why they each need it most.Continue reading...

health matters

Don't Supersize NYC: The War on Soda and Fries Continues

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 10, 2012 04:54 PM

New York City’s health department does not want fries with that. Or with anything else. In fact, the agency would prefer that its residents don’t bother with fast food and soda altogether — and certainly not in bigger sizes.

A new set of subway posters, printed in both English and Spanish, illustrate “the steady increase in sizes of soda cups and sleeves of French fries against backdrops of unhealthy people, including a diabetic man who is missing most of one leg," as the New York Times notes. The image, as seen at right, draws attention to the amputated leg.

The objective of the city's latest public health campaign is to show how obesity and diabetes have grown as issues at the same time that serving sizes have increased, and their devastating consequences. 

“The portion sizes that are marketed are often much more than humans need,” stated Dr. Thomas Farley, the city’s health commissioner, taking a cue from his boss — New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, whose administration is a veteran of shockvertising to grab the public's attention.Continue reading...

branding together

Brisk Woos Star Wars Fans with Mobile Game, Darth Maul Drink

Posted by Shirley Brady on January 4, 2012 01:08 PM

Brisk officially launched its Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace in 3D cross-marketing today: a mobile app (dubbed Brisksaber and actively teased on its Facebook page) and a limited-edition drink featuring Star Wars villain Darth Maul, as promoted with a new commercial, above. The Brisksaber app, which can be downloaded at uncaptheapp.com, invites fans to "Turn your finger into a lightsaber!" Click below to check out the limited-edition packaging promoting the movie's theatrical release next month.Continue reading...

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