Kellogg Company Makes Historic Commitment, Adopting Nutrition Standards for Marketing Foods to Children

Advocacy Groups and Parents Applaud Efforts, Drop Plans to Sue

Jun 14, 2007, 01:00 ET from Center for Science in the Public Interest

    WASHINGTON, June 14 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Kellogg Company will
 adopt nutrition standards for the foods it advertises to young children,
 and the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), the Campaign for
 Commercial- Free Childhood (CCFC), and two Massachusetts parents will not
 proceed with a lawsuit against the company.
     Foods advertised on media-including TV, radio, print, and third-party
 Web sites-that have an audience of 50 percent or more children under age 12
 will have to meet Kellogg's new nutrition standards, which require that one
 serving of the food has:
     -- No more than 200 calories
     -- No more than zero grams of trans fat and no more than 2 grams of
        saturated fat
     -- No more than 230 milligrams of sodium (except for Eggo frozen waffles)
     -- No more than 12 grams of sugar (excluding sugar from fruit, dairy, and
     Kellogg will continue its practice of not advertising to children under 6.
     In addition, Kellogg will not:
     -- Advertise to children any foods in schools and preschools that include
        kids under age 12;
     -- Sponsor product placements for any products in any medium primarily
        directed at kids under 12;
     -- Use licensed characters on mass-media advertising directed primarily to
        kids under 12, as a basis for a food form or on the front labels of
        food packages unless those foods meet the nutrition standards.
     -- Use branded toys in connection with foods that do not meet the
        nutrition standards.
     "We are pleased to work collaboratively with industry and advocacy
 groups to unveil these standards," said David Mackay, president and chief
 executive officer, Kellogg Company. "We feel the Kellogg Nutrient Criteria
 set a new standard for responsibility in the industry."
     "By committing to these nutrition standards and marketing reforms,
 Kellogg has vaulted over the rest of the food industry," said CSPI
 executive director Michael F. Jacobson. "As a practical matter, this
 commitment means that parents will find it a little easier to steer their
 children toward healthy food choices -- especially if other food
 manufacturers and broadcasters follow Kellogg's lead."
     Products that don't meet the criteria will either be reformulated to
 meet the Nutrient Criteria or they will no longer be marketed to children
 under 12 by the end of 2008. The nutrition standard will guide targeted
 future innovation and product development. Over time, Kellogg will work
 toward providing consumers even more product choices with enhanced
 nutritional value.
     "This agreement represents a significant step toward reducing marketing
 to children," said Susan Linn, co-founder of the CCFC. "CCFC is
 particularly pleased that Kellogg will end in-school advertising to
 children under 12 and restrict its use of licensed media characters. It's
 our hope that other companies will follow suit."
     In January 2006, CSPI, CCFC, and two Massachusetts parents, Sherri
 Carlson and Andrew Leong, announced their intent to sue Kellogg and Viacom,
 parent company of the Nickelodeon children's television network. Six weeks
 before the planned lawsuit was announced, the prestigious Institute of
 Medicine had released a landmark report that found that the mix of foods
 advertised to kids is "at best, a missed opportunity, and, at worst, a
 direct threat to the health of the next generation." Viacom is not a party
 to today's announcement.
     "We're pleased that we were able to work collaboratively with Kellogg
 and that litigation proved not to be necessary," said CSPI litigation
 director Steve Gardner, who along with Steve Skalet of the Washington,
 D.C., law firm of Mehri and Skalet, PLLC, negotiated for the prospective
     Last November the Council of Better Business Bureaus (CBBB), the parent
 group of the industry-funded Children's Advertising Review Unit (CARU),
 announced an initiative developed by 10 large food companies, including
 Kellogg, to shift their advertising toward healthier choices. The nutrition
 standards and marketing reforms in Kellogg's commitment will also form the
 basis for its pledge to that initiative.
     "This important agreement represents a rising tide that should lift all
 boats," said Jacobson. "I hope other companies adopt commitments that are
 at least equal to what Kellogg is announcing today." " We have further
 strengthened our global commitment to meeting consumers' health and
 nutrition needs," said Mackay. "This initiative builds on Kellogg's
 century-long legacy of leadership in health and nutrition."
     Over the past year, the company has invested nearly $10 million
 worldwide in health and nutrition initiatives and is committed to
 continuing these efforts.
     ABOUT CCFC: Campaign For A Commercial-Free Childhood (formerly Stop
 Commercial Exploitation of Children) is a national coalition of health care
 professionals, educators, advocacy groups and concerned parents who counter
 the harmful effects of marketing to children through action, advocacy,
 education, research, and collaboration. CCFC is headquartered at the Judge
 Baker Children's Center in Boston.
     ABOUT CSPI: The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) is a
 nonprofit health-advocacy group based in Washington, D.C., that focuses on
 nutrition, food safety, and pro-health alcohol policies. CSPI is supported
 largely by the 900,000 U.S. and Canadian subscribers to its Nutrition
 Action Healthletter and by foundation grants. On the web at
     ABOUT KELLOGG COMPANY: With 2006 sales of almost $11 billion, Kellogg
 Company (NYSE:   K) is the world's leading producer of cereal and a leading
 producer of convenience foods, including cookies, crackers, toaster
 pastries, cereal bars, fruit snacks, frozen waffles, and veggie foods. The
 company's brands include Kellogg's, Keebler, Pop-Tarts, Eggo, Cheez-It,
 Nutri-Grain, Special K, Rice Krispies, Murray, Austin, Morningstar Farms,
 Famous Amos, Carr's, Plantation, Ready Crust and Kashi. Kellogg products
 are manufactured in 17 countries and marketed in more than 180 countries
 around the world. For more information, visit the company's Web site at

SOURCE Center for Science in the Public Interest