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Effects of licensed characters on children's taste and snack preferences in Guatemala, a low/middle income country

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dc.contributor.author Letona, P.
dc.contributor.author Chacon, V.
dc.contributor.author Roberto, C.
dc.contributor.author Barnoya, J.
dc.date.accessioned 2014-12-23T13:31:59Z
dc.date.available 2014-12-23T13:31:59Z
dc.date.copyright 2014
dc.date.issued 2014-03
dc.identifier.citation Letona, P., Chacon, V., Roberto, C., & Barnoya, J. (2014). Effects of licensed characters on children's taste and snack preferences in Guatemala, a low/middle income country. International Journal of Obesity, 1-4. doi:10.1038/ijo.2014.38 en
dc.identifier.issn 0307-0565
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10625/53490
dc.description.abstract BACKGROUND: Marketing of high-energy, low-nutrient foods is one of the contributing factors to the obesity-promoting environment. Licensed characters are typically used to market these foods to children because they increase brand recognition and sales, and data suggest that they affect the taste and snack preferences of children in high-income countries, but it has not yet been explored in low/middle income countries (LMICs). We sought to examine how licensed characters on food packaging influence children's taste and snack preferences in Guatemala, a LMIC. METHODS: One hundred twenty-one children (mean ± s.d. age, 7.4 ± 1.9 years) from four (two preschool and two elementary) public schools in Guatemala tasted three food types: potato chips, crackers and carrots. Each was presented in two identical packages, except that one had a licensed character and the other did not. Children tasted the foods (six total) in each package and answered whether they tasted the same or one tasted better. Snack preference was also evaluated. RESULTS: Children were significantly (Po0.001) more likely to prefer the taste of the foods inside the package with the licensed character compared with the one with no character (mean ± s.d., 0.24 ± 0.54). Most (66%) chose the food in the package with the character for a snack. Younger children (Po0.001) were more likely to prefer the taste of the food inside the package with the character. CONCLUSIONS: Licensed characters on food packaging influence Guatemalan children's taste and snack preferences. Given that these characters are typically used to promote high-energy, low-nutrient foods, their influence could contribute toward overconsumption of these foods and consequently increased risk of obesity in Guatemalan children. Therefore, public health advocates, in Guatemala and elsewhere, might explore restricting the use of licensed characters on food packaging as a public health strategy. en
dc.format Text en
dc.format.extent 1 digital file (p. 1-4) en
dc.format.mimetype Application/pdf
dc.language.iso en
dc.publisher Macmillan Publishers en
dc.subject PEDIATRIC OBESITY en
dc.subject MIDDLE INCOME COUNTRIES en
dc.subject MARKETING en
dc.subject HEALTH POLICY en
dc.subject TASTE/SNACK PREFERENCE en
dc.subject LICENSED CHARACTERS en
dc.subject SNACKS en
dc.subject GUATEMALA en
dc.subject CHILDREN en
dc.subject LOW INCOME COUNTRIES en
dc.subject PACKAGING en
dc.subject PUBLIC HEALTH en
dc.title Effects of licensed characters on children's taste and snack preferences in Guatemala, a low/middle income country en
dc.type Journal Article (peer-reviewed) en
idrc.project.number 106883
idrc.project.componentnumber 106883001
idrc.project.title Influence of Food Packaging on Children's Energy-dense Snack Food Preferences in Guatemala en
idrc.copyright.holder Macmillan Publishers Limited
idrc.dspace.access IDRC Only en
idrc.rims.adhocgroup IDRC SUPPORTED en
idrc.recordsserver.bcsnumber IC01-3093-7
idrc.noaccess Due to copyright restrictions the full text of this research output is not available in the IDRC Digital Library or by request from the IDRC Library. / Compte tenu des restrictions relatives au droit d'auteur, le texte intégral de cet extrant de recherche n'est pas accessible dans la Bibliothèque numérique du CRDI, et il n'est pas possible d'en faire la demande à la Bibliothéque du CRDI. en


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