Our Commitment to Responsible Marketing

America’s food and beverage companies have a strong commitment to providing consumers with the products, tools and information they need to achieve and maintain a healthy diet.   Recognizing the unique role we play in the health and wellness of Americans – especially children – America’s food and beverage companies have implemented voluntary changes to their advertising practices that have dramatically changed the marketing landscape, working through the Council of Better Business Bureaus’ Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative (CFBAI). 

Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative (CFBAI)

Founded in 2006, the CFBAI was formed to shift the mix of child-directed advertising to increase nutritious and/or healthy lifestyle messages for products seen on children’s programming.  Sixteen of the nation’s largest and most influential food companies, which represent the vast majority of child-directed marketing in the United States, are participating members of CFBAI.  Participants commit to not engage in child-directed advertising or that 100 percent of their child-directed advertising will be for healthier products.

CFBAI applies to all child-directed advertising in traditional measured media and new and emerging digital and social media, including TV, Web sites, DVDs, video games, mobile apps and word of mouth. Product placement in child-directed content is not permitted, even for healthy products. Additionally, CFBAI participants have pledged not to advertise to children in elementary schools.
Under new, rigorous nutrition criteria adopted by CFBAI in July 2011, all products marketed by CFBAI’s participants on children’s programs must be for healthier product choices that meet strict standards for calorie, sugar, fat and sodium content. Additionally, the products must contain specified amounts of food groups to encourage and/or essential nutrients. Product changes must be completed by the end of 2013 or the products may no longer be advertised to children.

As a result of industry's efforts through CFBAI: 

  • Between 2004 and 2010, total advertisements viewed by children on children’s television programming fell by more than half.
  • In the same term, ads for cookies (99 percent), candy (68 percent), soda (96 percent) and snacks (71 percent) declined dramatically.
  • Today 100 percent of advertisements seen during children’s programming promote healthier diet choices and bettter-for-you products.

Additional CFBAI Resources:

Contact: Nancy Wilkins, director, Federal Affairs, Agriculture and Food Policy