Free TV Australia today called on the ALP to reconsider imposing bans on food advertising in children’s programs.
Chairman of Free TV Australia and Nine Network CEO, David Gyngell said, “This proposal is a kneejerk response to a complex problem. It will not address the many factors contributing to our childhood obesity problem. Advertising bans in other countries such as Sweden* have had no impact on obesity levels.”
“All programming on Free TV, including children’s programs, is funded by advertising. This initiative would seriously compromise the ability of broadcasters to continue to provide quality children’s programming” stated Network Ten CEO, John McAlpine.
David Leckie, Seven Network CEO said “Australia has some of the highest restrictions on children’s television advertising in the world. All advertising in pre-school programming is already banned, and the amount and content of advertising in other children’s is strictly controlled.”
Free TV Australia CEO, Julie Flynn, said “This proposal casts food as the new tobacco, but, unlike tobacco, all food has a place as part of a balanced approach to eating and exercise.”
“The ALP is not proposing to apply the ban to Pay TV which has whole channels specifically targeted towards children. These channels are totally unregulated”, she added.
Ms Flynn added that “Free TV Australia will continue to work with all interested parties to promote a holistic solution to a complex issue.”
*Sweden has had advertising bans in children’s programming since 1991.