What is the potential impact of new restrictions on HFSS Advertising?
The UK currently places strong restrictions on the advertising of high fat, salt or sugar products (HFSS) on broadcast media platforms and online. However, it is estimated that 50% of children’s viewing time take place outside of programming where current regulation is in force, meaning that children are still exposed to HFSS adverts during the programmes they watch the most including ‘family shows’ and live sporting events.
While TV impacts are likely to have declined sharply in recent years, they have done so from a high base (i.e. billions of children’s views), suggesting exposure levels may still be significant. Children are also spending more time online, so a review of advertising exposure in online media was also required.
The last review of HFSS advertising restrictions was conducted by Ofcom in 2010. Since then, children’s media use and the online landscape has evolved significantly. Therefore, DCMS and DHSC sought new analysis to determine the current extent of advertising exposure and the impact further restrictions could make.
The focus of this study was to produce an accurate calculation of current exposure levels to HFSS advertising, and the potential impact of new restrictions on levels of exposure and advertising revenue.
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