Chile Bans Toys in Fast-Food Meals



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Chile attempts to combat childhood obesity by banning toys in fast food meals

In an attempt to fight childhood obesity, one South American country is trying to fight fast-food companies on marketing to kids.

Kids in Chile may not be so happy when they open up their Happy Meals as Chile aims to ban fast-food establishments from including a surprise in every box. The South American country implemented the new law enacted in June to fight the climbing rate of childhood obesity in the country, according to the Associated Press.

The law, which was passed on June 7, has yet to be fully implemented as companies are still using toys to lure in younger clientele. As the country takes aim to fully enforce the law, McDonald’s, Burger King, KFC and other restaurants are forbidden to include toys for kids in their meals, reported the Associated Press.

Sen. Guido Girardi filed an official complaint Aug. 1 with the Health Ministry in Chile because restaurants have yet to pull the toys from their locations even though the ban began on June 7, reported the Associated Press.

Fast-food establishments aren’t the only food providers listed in the new law. Companies that sell cereals, popsicles, and other child-friendly food products are also banned from including toys with their products. If toys aren’t removed from food products, the companies could face nominal fines, reported the Associated Press.


The Happy Meal, a triumph of marketing blamed for childhood obesity, is turning 40

Happy birthday, Happy Meal. The little box with the signature arches-as-handles is turning 40 this year, and McDonald’s is celebrating with a nostalgia-triggering revival of some of the most popular toys to have been included in the kid-targeted package over the decades.

Starting Thursday, the fast-food giant is including with its Happy Meals one of 17 throwback toys. There are 1980s-era “McNugget Buddies” decked out as cowboys and mail carriers, a 1997 Patti the Platypus Beanie Baby, a Power Ranger from 1995 and a 2013 Hello Kitty doll.

But it’s not those little bits of shiny plastic alone — or even the meal itself, usually a burger or some nuggets and pint-size fries — that explains the Happy Meal’s success, which has come despite years of controversy over its effect on kids’ diets. To understand its longevity and appeal, look no further than the quote the company supplied in a news release announcing its special anniversary offerings. “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world,” Steve Easterbrook, the former McDonald’s chief executive, said in the statement. (His words were written, obviously, before he was forced out after an affair with an employee.)

McDonald’s has been selling these “lasting memories,” along with its burgers and fries, for decades to both children and their parents.

“Their marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them” to McDonald’s, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

John Stanton, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, says McDonald’s is following a long tradition of American advertisers. “ Charles Revson of Revlon used to say, ‘In the factories, we make cosmetics, but at counters, we sell hope.’ ” he says. “McDonald’s is saying ‘Yeah, th ere’s this stuff in this box, but this experience is going to make you feel good — happy.’ ”

The fast-food chain’s anniversary campaign is a way to appeal not just to kids but also to their parents, many of whom grew up eating Happy Meals. Chances are, the mom or dad wheeling that minivan up to the drive-through window remembers getting, or at least coveting, one of the blast-from-the-past toys themselves. “If you had a positive experience there, you’re more likely to take your children,” Harris says.

To wit: another quote McDonald’s released as part of its anniversary campaign. The company did not make any executives available for an interview, but Colin Mitchell, the company’s senior vice president for global marketing, said in the release, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”

For parents, particularly working ones who might not have hours of time with their children, the proposition of spending around $3 for a “moment of bonding” is a pretty good one. Stanton says he has been in on focus groups that show mothers who work outside the home are anxious to make the most of whatever time they have with their kids. “They have this sense that they have to work hard at making a wonderful experience,” he says.

So it’s obvious that much of the Happy Meal’s appeal isn’t just about sustenance but also contentedness. Still, in the course of its 40-year history, the meal has also caused plenty of anxiety.

In 2002, two New York teenagers filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that the chain’s food, including Happy Meals, had contributed to their obesity. The case was eventually dismissed. Other legal challenges include a 2010 California lawsuit that sought to stop the company from giving away toys, which plaintiffs claimed were used to lure children into eating unhealthy food. That was ultimately tossed, too.

Even outside the courtroom, almost since the beginning, the product has been fingered as both a symbol and cause of childhood obesity. The city of San Francisco in 2011 imposed an ordinance banning fast-food restaurants from offering free toys. But the wily Golden Arches got around the rule by tacking on a 10-cent surcharge for the plaything.

In recent years, McDonald’s has stepped up efforts to make its kids’ offerings healthier. The meal had long included either a hamburger, cheeseburger or McNuggets, along with a side of fries and a small soda. In 2011, it added apple slices and shrank the serving size of fries to 1.1 ounces. In 2013, it removed soda as the default drink. Subsequent changes included lower-sugar juices, reformulating its chocolate milk and dropping cheeseburgers entirely. Last year, it announced new goals, promising that by 2022, more than half of Happy Meals would contain less than 650 mg sodium and fewer than 600 calories, with less than 10 percent of those coming from saturated fat and less than 10 percent from added sugar.

Sina Gallo, an assistant professor of nutrition at George Mason University, says there’s nothing wrong with children having an occasional Happy Meal, but that even with healthier options, the bigger danger is making them a regular part of a child’s diet — and worse, creating little eaters who grow up to be frequent fast-food consumers as grown-ups. “ We know that setting up behaviors very young can lead them to continue those behaviors into adolescence and adulthood,” Gallo says.


The Happy Meal, a triumph of marketing blamed for childhood obesity, is turning 40

Happy birthday, Happy Meal. The little box with the signature arches-as-handles is turning 40 this year, and McDonald’s is celebrating with a nostalgia-triggering revival of some of the most popular toys to have been included in the kid-targeted package over the decades.

Starting Thursday, the fast-food giant is including with its Happy Meals one of 17 throwback toys. There are 1980s-era “McNugget Buddies” decked out as cowboys and mail carriers, a 1997 Patti the Platypus Beanie Baby, a Power Ranger from 1995 and a 2013 Hello Kitty doll.

But it’s not those little bits of shiny plastic alone — or even the meal itself, usually a burger or some nuggets and pint-size fries — that explains the Happy Meal’s success, which has come despite years of controversy over its effect on kids’ diets. To understand its longevity and appeal, look no further than the quote the company supplied in a news release announcing its special anniversary offerings. “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world,” Steve Easterbrook, the former McDonald’s chief executive, said in the statement. (His words were written, obviously, before he was forced out after an affair with an employee.)

McDonald’s has been selling these “lasting memories,” along with its burgers and fries, for decades to both children and their parents.

“Their marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them” to McDonald’s, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

John Stanton, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, says McDonald’s is following a long tradition of American advertisers. “ Charles Revson of Revlon used to say, ‘In the factories, we make cosmetics, but at counters, we sell hope.’ ” he says. “McDonald’s is saying ‘Yeah, th ere’s this stuff in this box, but this experience is going to make you feel good — happy.’ ”

The fast-food chain’s anniversary campaign is a way to appeal not just to kids but also to their parents, many of whom grew up eating Happy Meals. Chances are, the mom or dad wheeling that minivan up to the drive-through window remembers getting, or at least coveting, one of the blast-from-the-past toys themselves. “If you had a positive experience there, you’re more likely to take your children,” Harris says.

To wit: another quote McDonald’s released as part of its anniversary campaign. The company did not make any executives available for an interview, but Colin Mitchell, the company’s senior vice president for global marketing, said in the release, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”

For parents, particularly working ones who might not have hours of time with their children, the proposition of spending around $3 for a “moment of bonding” is a pretty good one. Stanton says he has been in on focus groups that show mothers who work outside the home are anxious to make the most of whatever time they have with their kids. “They have this sense that they have to work hard at making a wonderful experience,” he says.

So it’s obvious that much of the Happy Meal’s appeal isn’t just about sustenance but also contentedness. Still, in the course of its 40-year history, the meal has also caused plenty of anxiety.

In 2002, two New York teenagers filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that the chain’s food, including Happy Meals, had contributed to their obesity. The case was eventually dismissed. Other legal challenges include a 2010 California lawsuit that sought to stop the company from giving away toys, which plaintiffs claimed were used to lure children into eating unhealthy food. That was ultimately tossed, too.

Even outside the courtroom, almost since the beginning, the product has been fingered as both a symbol and cause of childhood obesity. The city of San Francisco in 2011 imposed an ordinance banning fast-food restaurants from offering free toys. But the wily Golden Arches got around the rule by tacking on a 10-cent surcharge for the plaything.

In recent years, McDonald’s has stepped up efforts to make its kids’ offerings healthier. The meal had long included either a hamburger, cheeseburger or McNuggets, along with a side of fries and a small soda. In 2011, it added apple slices and shrank the serving size of fries to 1.1 ounces. In 2013, it removed soda as the default drink. Subsequent changes included lower-sugar juices, reformulating its chocolate milk and dropping cheeseburgers entirely. Last year, it announced new goals, promising that by 2022, more than half of Happy Meals would contain less than 650 mg sodium and fewer than 600 calories, with less than 10 percent of those coming from saturated fat and less than 10 percent from added sugar.

Sina Gallo, an assistant professor of nutrition at George Mason University, says there’s nothing wrong with children having an occasional Happy Meal, but that even with healthier options, the bigger danger is making them a regular part of a child’s diet — and worse, creating little eaters who grow up to be frequent fast-food consumers as grown-ups. “ We know that setting up behaviors very young can lead them to continue those behaviors into adolescence and adulthood,” Gallo says.


The Happy Meal, a triumph of marketing blamed for childhood obesity, is turning 40

Happy birthday, Happy Meal. The little box with the signature arches-as-handles is turning 40 this year, and McDonald’s is celebrating with a nostalgia-triggering revival of some of the most popular toys to have been included in the kid-targeted package over the decades.

Starting Thursday, the fast-food giant is including with its Happy Meals one of 17 throwback toys. There are 1980s-era “McNugget Buddies” decked out as cowboys and mail carriers, a 1997 Patti the Platypus Beanie Baby, a Power Ranger from 1995 and a 2013 Hello Kitty doll.

But it’s not those little bits of shiny plastic alone — or even the meal itself, usually a burger or some nuggets and pint-size fries — that explains the Happy Meal’s success, which has come despite years of controversy over its effect on kids’ diets. To understand its longevity and appeal, look no further than the quote the company supplied in a news release announcing its special anniversary offerings. “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world,” Steve Easterbrook, the former McDonald’s chief executive, said in the statement. (His words were written, obviously, before he was forced out after an affair with an employee.)

McDonald’s has been selling these “lasting memories,” along with its burgers and fries, for decades to both children and their parents.

“Their marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them” to McDonald’s, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

John Stanton, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, says McDonald’s is following a long tradition of American advertisers. “ Charles Revson of Revlon used to say, ‘In the factories, we make cosmetics, but at counters, we sell hope.’ ” he says. “McDonald’s is saying ‘Yeah, th ere’s this stuff in this box, but this experience is going to make you feel good — happy.’ ”

The fast-food chain’s anniversary campaign is a way to appeal not just to kids but also to their parents, many of whom grew up eating Happy Meals. Chances are, the mom or dad wheeling that minivan up to the drive-through window remembers getting, or at least coveting, one of the blast-from-the-past toys themselves. “If you had a positive experience there, you’re more likely to take your children,” Harris says.

To wit: another quote McDonald’s released as part of its anniversary campaign. The company did not make any executives available for an interview, but Colin Mitchell, the company’s senior vice president for global marketing, said in the release, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”

For parents, particularly working ones who might not have hours of time with their children, the proposition of spending around $3 for a “moment of bonding” is a pretty good one. Stanton says he has been in on focus groups that show mothers who work outside the home are anxious to make the most of whatever time they have with their kids. “They have this sense that they have to work hard at making a wonderful experience,” he says.

So it’s obvious that much of the Happy Meal’s appeal isn’t just about sustenance but also contentedness. Still, in the course of its 40-year history, the meal has also caused plenty of anxiety.

In 2002, two New York teenagers filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that the chain’s food, including Happy Meals, had contributed to their obesity. The case was eventually dismissed. Other legal challenges include a 2010 California lawsuit that sought to stop the company from giving away toys, which plaintiffs claimed were used to lure children into eating unhealthy food. That was ultimately tossed, too.

Even outside the courtroom, almost since the beginning, the product has been fingered as both a symbol and cause of childhood obesity. The city of San Francisco in 2011 imposed an ordinance banning fast-food restaurants from offering free toys. But the wily Golden Arches got around the rule by tacking on a 10-cent surcharge for the plaything.

In recent years, McDonald’s has stepped up efforts to make its kids’ offerings healthier. The meal had long included either a hamburger, cheeseburger or McNuggets, along with a side of fries and a small soda. In 2011, it added apple slices and shrank the serving size of fries to 1.1 ounces. In 2013, it removed soda as the default drink. Subsequent changes included lower-sugar juices, reformulating its chocolate milk and dropping cheeseburgers entirely. Last year, it announced new goals, promising that by 2022, more than half of Happy Meals would contain less than 650 mg sodium and fewer than 600 calories, with less than 10 percent of those coming from saturated fat and less than 10 percent from added sugar.

Sina Gallo, an assistant professor of nutrition at George Mason University, says there’s nothing wrong with children having an occasional Happy Meal, but that even with healthier options, the bigger danger is making them a regular part of a child’s diet — and worse, creating little eaters who grow up to be frequent fast-food consumers as grown-ups. “ We know that setting up behaviors very young can lead them to continue those behaviors into adolescence and adulthood,” Gallo says.


The Happy Meal, a triumph of marketing blamed for childhood obesity, is turning 40

Happy birthday, Happy Meal. The little box with the signature arches-as-handles is turning 40 this year, and McDonald’s is celebrating with a nostalgia-triggering revival of some of the most popular toys to have been included in the kid-targeted package over the decades.

Starting Thursday, the fast-food giant is including with its Happy Meals one of 17 throwback toys. There are 1980s-era “McNugget Buddies” decked out as cowboys and mail carriers, a 1997 Patti the Platypus Beanie Baby, a Power Ranger from 1995 and a 2013 Hello Kitty doll.

But it’s not those little bits of shiny plastic alone — or even the meal itself, usually a burger or some nuggets and pint-size fries — that explains the Happy Meal’s success, which has come despite years of controversy over its effect on kids’ diets. To understand its longevity and appeal, look no further than the quote the company supplied in a news release announcing its special anniversary offerings. “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world,” Steve Easterbrook, the former McDonald’s chief executive, said in the statement. (His words were written, obviously, before he was forced out after an affair with an employee.)

McDonald’s has been selling these “lasting memories,” along with its burgers and fries, for decades to both children and their parents.

“Their marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them” to McDonald’s, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

John Stanton, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, says McDonald’s is following a long tradition of American advertisers. “ Charles Revson of Revlon used to say, ‘In the factories, we make cosmetics, but at counters, we sell hope.’ ” he says. “McDonald’s is saying ‘Yeah, th ere’s this stuff in this box, but this experience is going to make you feel good — happy.’ ”

The fast-food chain’s anniversary campaign is a way to appeal not just to kids but also to their parents, many of whom grew up eating Happy Meals. Chances are, the mom or dad wheeling that minivan up to the drive-through window remembers getting, or at least coveting, one of the blast-from-the-past toys themselves. “If you had a positive experience there, you’re more likely to take your children,” Harris says.

To wit: another quote McDonald’s released as part of its anniversary campaign. The company did not make any executives available for an interview, but Colin Mitchell, the company’s senior vice president for global marketing, said in the release, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”

For parents, particularly working ones who might not have hours of time with their children, the proposition of spending around $3 for a “moment of bonding” is a pretty good one. Stanton says he has been in on focus groups that show mothers who work outside the home are anxious to make the most of whatever time they have with their kids. “They have this sense that they have to work hard at making a wonderful experience,” he says.

So it’s obvious that much of the Happy Meal’s appeal isn’t just about sustenance but also contentedness. Still, in the course of its 40-year history, the meal has also caused plenty of anxiety.

In 2002, two New York teenagers filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that the chain’s food, including Happy Meals, had contributed to their obesity. The case was eventually dismissed. Other legal challenges include a 2010 California lawsuit that sought to stop the company from giving away toys, which plaintiffs claimed were used to lure children into eating unhealthy food. That was ultimately tossed, too.

Even outside the courtroom, almost since the beginning, the product has been fingered as both a symbol and cause of childhood obesity. The city of San Francisco in 2011 imposed an ordinance banning fast-food restaurants from offering free toys. But the wily Golden Arches got around the rule by tacking on a 10-cent surcharge for the plaything.

In recent years, McDonald’s has stepped up efforts to make its kids’ offerings healthier. The meal had long included either a hamburger, cheeseburger or McNuggets, along with a side of fries and a small soda. In 2011, it added apple slices and shrank the serving size of fries to 1.1 ounces. In 2013, it removed soda as the default drink. Subsequent changes included lower-sugar juices, reformulating its chocolate milk and dropping cheeseburgers entirely. Last year, it announced new goals, promising that by 2022, more than half of Happy Meals would contain less than 650 mg sodium and fewer than 600 calories, with less than 10 percent of those coming from saturated fat and less than 10 percent from added sugar.

Sina Gallo, an assistant professor of nutrition at George Mason University, says there’s nothing wrong with children having an occasional Happy Meal, but that even with healthier options, the bigger danger is making them a regular part of a child’s diet — and worse, creating little eaters who grow up to be frequent fast-food consumers as grown-ups. “ We know that setting up behaviors very young can lead them to continue those behaviors into adolescence and adulthood,” Gallo says.


The Happy Meal, a triumph of marketing blamed for childhood obesity, is turning 40

Happy birthday, Happy Meal. The little box with the signature arches-as-handles is turning 40 this year, and McDonald’s is celebrating with a nostalgia-triggering revival of some of the most popular toys to have been included in the kid-targeted package over the decades.

Starting Thursday, the fast-food giant is including with its Happy Meals one of 17 throwback toys. There are 1980s-era “McNugget Buddies” decked out as cowboys and mail carriers, a 1997 Patti the Platypus Beanie Baby, a Power Ranger from 1995 and a 2013 Hello Kitty doll.

But it’s not those little bits of shiny plastic alone — or even the meal itself, usually a burger or some nuggets and pint-size fries — that explains the Happy Meal’s success, which has come despite years of controversy over its effect on kids’ diets. To understand its longevity and appeal, look no further than the quote the company supplied in a news release announcing its special anniversary offerings. “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world,” Steve Easterbrook, the former McDonald’s chief executive, said in the statement. (His words were written, obviously, before he was forced out after an affair with an employee.)

McDonald’s has been selling these “lasting memories,” along with its burgers and fries, for decades to both children and their parents.

“Their marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them” to McDonald’s, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

John Stanton, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, says McDonald’s is following a long tradition of American advertisers. “ Charles Revson of Revlon used to say, ‘In the factories, we make cosmetics, but at counters, we sell hope.’ ” he says. “McDonald’s is saying ‘Yeah, th ere’s this stuff in this box, but this experience is going to make you feel good — happy.’ ”

The fast-food chain’s anniversary campaign is a way to appeal not just to kids but also to their parents, many of whom grew up eating Happy Meals. Chances are, the mom or dad wheeling that minivan up to the drive-through window remembers getting, or at least coveting, one of the blast-from-the-past toys themselves. “If you had a positive experience there, you’re more likely to take your children,” Harris says.

To wit: another quote McDonald’s released as part of its anniversary campaign. The company did not make any executives available for an interview, but Colin Mitchell, the company’s senior vice president for global marketing, said in the release, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”

For parents, particularly working ones who might not have hours of time with their children, the proposition of spending around $3 for a “moment of bonding” is a pretty good one. Stanton says he has been in on focus groups that show mothers who work outside the home are anxious to make the most of whatever time they have with their kids. “They have this sense that they have to work hard at making a wonderful experience,” he says.

So it’s obvious that much of the Happy Meal’s appeal isn’t just about sustenance but also contentedness. Still, in the course of its 40-year history, the meal has also caused plenty of anxiety.

In 2002, two New York teenagers filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that the chain’s food, including Happy Meals, had contributed to their obesity. The case was eventually dismissed. Other legal challenges include a 2010 California lawsuit that sought to stop the company from giving away toys, which plaintiffs claimed were used to lure children into eating unhealthy food. That was ultimately tossed, too.

Even outside the courtroom, almost since the beginning, the product has been fingered as both a symbol and cause of childhood obesity. The city of San Francisco in 2011 imposed an ordinance banning fast-food restaurants from offering free toys. But the wily Golden Arches got around the rule by tacking on a 10-cent surcharge for the plaything.

In recent years, McDonald’s has stepped up efforts to make its kids’ offerings healthier. The meal had long included either a hamburger, cheeseburger or McNuggets, along with a side of fries and a small soda. In 2011, it added apple slices and shrank the serving size of fries to 1.1 ounces. In 2013, it removed soda as the default drink. Subsequent changes included lower-sugar juices, reformulating its chocolate milk and dropping cheeseburgers entirely. Last year, it announced new goals, promising that by 2022, more than half of Happy Meals would contain less than 650 mg sodium and fewer than 600 calories, with less than 10 percent of those coming from saturated fat and less than 10 percent from added sugar.

Sina Gallo, an assistant professor of nutrition at George Mason University, says there’s nothing wrong with children having an occasional Happy Meal, but that even with healthier options, the bigger danger is making them a regular part of a child’s diet — and worse, creating little eaters who grow up to be frequent fast-food consumers as grown-ups. “ We know that setting up behaviors very young can lead them to continue those behaviors into adolescence and adulthood,” Gallo says.


The Happy Meal, a triumph of marketing blamed for childhood obesity, is turning 40

Happy birthday, Happy Meal. The little box with the signature arches-as-handles is turning 40 this year, and McDonald’s is celebrating with a nostalgia-triggering revival of some of the most popular toys to have been included in the kid-targeted package over the decades.

Starting Thursday, the fast-food giant is including with its Happy Meals one of 17 throwback toys. There are 1980s-era “McNugget Buddies” decked out as cowboys and mail carriers, a 1997 Patti the Platypus Beanie Baby, a Power Ranger from 1995 and a 2013 Hello Kitty doll.

But it’s not those little bits of shiny plastic alone — or even the meal itself, usually a burger or some nuggets and pint-size fries — that explains the Happy Meal’s success, which has come despite years of controversy over its effect on kids’ diets. To understand its longevity and appeal, look no further than the quote the company supplied in a news release announcing its special anniversary offerings. “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world,” Steve Easterbrook, the former McDonald’s chief executive, said in the statement. (His words were written, obviously, before he was forced out after an affair with an employee.)

McDonald’s has been selling these “lasting memories,” along with its burgers and fries, for decades to both children and their parents.

“Their marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them” to McDonald’s, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

John Stanton, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, says McDonald’s is following a long tradition of American advertisers. “ Charles Revson of Revlon used to say, ‘In the factories, we make cosmetics, but at counters, we sell hope.’ ” he says. “McDonald’s is saying ‘Yeah, th ere’s this stuff in this box, but this experience is going to make you feel good — happy.’ ”

The fast-food chain’s anniversary campaign is a way to appeal not just to kids but also to their parents, many of whom grew up eating Happy Meals. Chances are, the mom or dad wheeling that minivan up to the drive-through window remembers getting, or at least coveting, one of the blast-from-the-past toys themselves. “If you had a positive experience there, you’re more likely to take your children,” Harris says.

To wit: another quote McDonald’s released as part of its anniversary campaign. The company did not make any executives available for an interview, but Colin Mitchell, the company’s senior vice president for global marketing, said in the release, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”

For parents, particularly working ones who might not have hours of time with their children, the proposition of spending around $3 for a “moment of bonding” is a pretty good one. Stanton says he has been in on focus groups that show mothers who work outside the home are anxious to make the most of whatever time they have with their kids. “They have this sense that they have to work hard at making a wonderful experience,” he says.

So it’s obvious that much of the Happy Meal’s appeal isn’t just about sustenance but also contentedness. Still, in the course of its 40-year history, the meal has also caused plenty of anxiety.

In 2002, two New York teenagers filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that the chain’s food, including Happy Meals, had contributed to their obesity. The case was eventually dismissed. Other legal challenges include a 2010 California lawsuit that sought to stop the company from giving away toys, which plaintiffs claimed were used to lure children into eating unhealthy food. That was ultimately tossed, too.

Even outside the courtroom, almost since the beginning, the product has been fingered as both a symbol and cause of childhood obesity. The city of San Francisco in 2011 imposed an ordinance banning fast-food restaurants from offering free toys. But the wily Golden Arches got around the rule by tacking on a 10-cent surcharge for the plaything.

In recent years, McDonald’s has stepped up efforts to make its kids’ offerings healthier. The meal had long included either a hamburger, cheeseburger or McNuggets, along with a side of fries and a small soda. In 2011, it added apple slices and shrank the serving size of fries to 1.1 ounces. In 2013, it removed soda as the default drink. Subsequent changes included lower-sugar juices, reformulating its chocolate milk and dropping cheeseburgers entirely. Last year, it announced new goals, promising that by 2022, more than half of Happy Meals would contain less than 650 mg sodium and fewer than 600 calories, with less than 10 percent of those coming from saturated fat and less than 10 percent from added sugar.

Sina Gallo, an assistant professor of nutrition at George Mason University, says there’s nothing wrong with children having an occasional Happy Meal, but that even with healthier options, the bigger danger is making them a regular part of a child’s diet — and worse, creating little eaters who grow up to be frequent fast-food consumers as grown-ups. “ We know that setting up behaviors very young can lead them to continue those behaviors into adolescence and adulthood,” Gallo says.


The Happy Meal, a triumph of marketing blamed for childhood obesity, is turning 40

Happy birthday, Happy Meal. The little box with the signature arches-as-handles is turning 40 this year, and McDonald’s is celebrating with a nostalgia-triggering revival of some of the most popular toys to have been included in the kid-targeted package over the decades.

Starting Thursday, the fast-food giant is including with its Happy Meals one of 17 throwback toys. There are 1980s-era “McNugget Buddies” decked out as cowboys and mail carriers, a 1997 Patti the Platypus Beanie Baby, a Power Ranger from 1995 and a 2013 Hello Kitty doll.

But it’s not those little bits of shiny plastic alone — or even the meal itself, usually a burger or some nuggets and pint-size fries — that explains the Happy Meal’s success, which has come despite years of controversy over its effect on kids’ diets. To understand its longevity and appeal, look no further than the quote the company supplied in a news release announcing its special anniversary offerings. “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world,” Steve Easterbrook, the former McDonald’s chief executive, said in the statement. (His words were written, obviously, before he was forced out after an affair with an employee.)

McDonald’s has been selling these “lasting memories,” along with its burgers and fries, for decades to both children and their parents.

“Their marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them” to McDonald’s, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

John Stanton, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, says McDonald’s is following a long tradition of American advertisers. “ Charles Revson of Revlon used to say, ‘In the factories, we make cosmetics, but at counters, we sell hope.’ ” he says. “McDonald’s is saying ‘Yeah, th ere’s this stuff in this box, but this experience is going to make you feel good — happy.’ ”

The fast-food chain’s anniversary campaign is a way to appeal not just to kids but also to their parents, many of whom grew up eating Happy Meals. Chances are, the mom or dad wheeling that minivan up to the drive-through window remembers getting, or at least coveting, one of the blast-from-the-past toys themselves. “If you had a positive experience there, you’re more likely to take your children,” Harris says.

To wit: another quote McDonald’s released as part of its anniversary campaign. The company did not make any executives available for an interview, but Colin Mitchell, the company’s senior vice president for global marketing, said in the release, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”

For parents, particularly working ones who might not have hours of time with their children, the proposition of spending around $3 for a “moment of bonding” is a pretty good one. Stanton says he has been in on focus groups that show mothers who work outside the home are anxious to make the most of whatever time they have with their kids. “They have this sense that they have to work hard at making a wonderful experience,” he says.

So it’s obvious that much of the Happy Meal’s appeal isn’t just about sustenance but also contentedness. Still, in the course of its 40-year history, the meal has also caused plenty of anxiety.

In 2002, two New York teenagers filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that the chain’s food, including Happy Meals, had contributed to their obesity. The case was eventually dismissed. Other legal challenges include a 2010 California lawsuit that sought to stop the company from giving away toys, which plaintiffs claimed were used to lure children into eating unhealthy food. That was ultimately tossed, too.

Even outside the courtroom, almost since the beginning, the product has been fingered as both a symbol and cause of childhood obesity. The city of San Francisco in 2011 imposed an ordinance banning fast-food restaurants from offering free toys. But the wily Golden Arches got around the rule by tacking on a 10-cent surcharge for the plaything.

In recent years, McDonald’s has stepped up efforts to make its kids’ offerings healthier. The meal had long included either a hamburger, cheeseburger or McNuggets, along with a side of fries and a small soda. In 2011, it added apple slices and shrank the serving size of fries to 1.1 ounces. In 2013, it removed soda as the default drink. Subsequent changes included lower-sugar juices, reformulating its chocolate milk and dropping cheeseburgers entirely. Last year, it announced new goals, promising that by 2022, more than half of Happy Meals would contain less than 650 mg sodium and fewer than 600 calories, with less than 10 percent of those coming from saturated fat and less than 10 percent from added sugar.

Sina Gallo, an assistant professor of nutrition at George Mason University, says there’s nothing wrong with children having an occasional Happy Meal, but that even with healthier options, the bigger danger is making them a regular part of a child’s diet — and worse, creating little eaters who grow up to be frequent fast-food consumers as grown-ups. “ We know that setting up behaviors very young can lead them to continue those behaviors into adolescence and adulthood,” Gallo says.


The Happy Meal, a triumph of marketing blamed for childhood obesity, is turning 40

Happy birthday, Happy Meal. The little box with the signature arches-as-handles is turning 40 this year, and McDonald’s is celebrating with a nostalgia-triggering revival of some of the most popular toys to have been included in the kid-targeted package over the decades.

Starting Thursday, the fast-food giant is including with its Happy Meals one of 17 throwback toys. There are 1980s-era “McNugget Buddies” decked out as cowboys and mail carriers, a 1997 Patti the Platypus Beanie Baby, a Power Ranger from 1995 and a 2013 Hello Kitty doll.

But it’s not those little bits of shiny plastic alone — or even the meal itself, usually a burger or some nuggets and pint-size fries — that explains the Happy Meal’s success, which has come despite years of controversy over its effect on kids’ diets. To understand its longevity and appeal, look no further than the quote the company supplied in a news release announcing its special anniversary offerings. “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world,” Steve Easterbrook, the former McDonald’s chief executive, said in the statement. (His words were written, obviously, before he was forced out after an affair with an employee.)

McDonald’s has been selling these “lasting memories,” along with its burgers and fries, for decades to both children and their parents.

“Their marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them” to McDonald’s, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

John Stanton, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, says McDonald’s is following a long tradition of American advertisers. “ Charles Revson of Revlon used to say, ‘In the factories, we make cosmetics, but at counters, we sell hope.’ ” he says. “McDonald’s is saying ‘Yeah, th ere’s this stuff in this box, but this experience is going to make you feel good — happy.’ ”

The fast-food chain’s anniversary campaign is a way to appeal not just to kids but also to their parents, many of whom grew up eating Happy Meals. Chances are, the mom or dad wheeling that minivan up to the drive-through window remembers getting, or at least coveting, one of the blast-from-the-past toys themselves. “If you had a positive experience there, you’re more likely to take your children,” Harris says.

To wit: another quote McDonald’s released as part of its anniversary campaign. The company did not make any executives available for an interview, but Colin Mitchell, the company’s senior vice president for global marketing, said in the release, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”

For parents, particularly working ones who might not have hours of time with their children, the proposition of spending around $3 for a “moment of bonding” is a pretty good one. Stanton says he has been in on focus groups that show mothers who work outside the home are anxious to make the most of whatever time they have with their kids. “They have this sense that they have to work hard at making a wonderful experience,” he says.

So it’s obvious that much of the Happy Meal’s appeal isn’t just about sustenance but also contentedness. Still, in the course of its 40-year history, the meal has also caused plenty of anxiety.

In 2002, two New York teenagers filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that the chain’s food, including Happy Meals, had contributed to their obesity. The case was eventually dismissed. Other legal challenges include a 2010 California lawsuit that sought to stop the company from giving away toys, which plaintiffs claimed were used to lure children into eating unhealthy food. That was ultimately tossed, too.

Even outside the courtroom, almost since the beginning, the product has been fingered as both a symbol and cause of childhood obesity. The city of San Francisco in 2011 imposed an ordinance banning fast-food restaurants from offering free toys. But the wily Golden Arches got around the rule by tacking on a 10-cent surcharge for the plaything.

In recent years, McDonald’s has stepped up efforts to make its kids’ offerings healthier. The meal had long included either a hamburger, cheeseburger or McNuggets, along with a side of fries and a small soda. In 2011, it added apple slices and shrank the serving size of fries to 1.1 ounces. In 2013, it removed soda as the default drink. Subsequent changes included lower-sugar juices, reformulating its chocolate milk and dropping cheeseburgers entirely. Last year, it announced new goals, promising that by 2022, more than half of Happy Meals would contain less than 650 mg sodium and fewer than 600 calories, with less than 10 percent of those coming from saturated fat and less than 10 percent from added sugar.

Sina Gallo, an assistant professor of nutrition at George Mason University, says there’s nothing wrong with children having an occasional Happy Meal, but that even with healthier options, the bigger danger is making them a regular part of a child’s diet — and worse, creating little eaters who grow up to be frequent fast-food consumers as grown-ups. “ We know that setting up behaviors very young can lead them to continue those behaviors into adolescence and adulthood,” Gallo says.


The Happy Meal, a triumph of marketing blamed for childhood obesity, is turning 40

Happy birthday, Happy Meal. The little box with the signature arches-as-handles is turning 40 this year, and McDonald’s is celebrating with a nostalgia-triggering revival of some of the most popular toys to have been included in the kid-targeted package over the decades.

Starting Thursday, the fast-food giant is including with its Happy Meals one of 17 throwback toys. There are 1980s-era “McNugget Buddies” decked out as cowboys and mail carriers, a 1997 Patti the Platypus Beanie Baby, a Power Ranger from 1995 and a 2013 Hello Kitty doll.

But it’s not those little bits of shiny plastic alone — or even the meal itself, usually a burger or some nuggets and pint-size fries — that explains the Happy Meal’s success, which has come despite years of controversy over its effect on kids’ diets. To understand its longevity and appeal, look no further than the quote the company supplied in a news release announcing its special anniversary offerings. “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world,” Steve Easterbrook, the former McDonald’s chief executive, said in the statement. (His words were written, obviously, before he was forced out after an affair with an employee.)

McDonald’s has been selling these “lasting memories,” along with its burgers and fries, for decades to both children and their parents.

“Their marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them” to McDonald’s, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

John Stanton, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, says McDonald’s is following a long tradition of American advertisers. “ Charles Revson of Revlon used to say, ‘In the factories, we make cosmetics, but at counters, we sell hope.’ ” he says. “McDonald’s is saying ‘Yeah, th ere’s this stuff in this box, but this experience is going to make you feel good — happy.’ ”

The fast-food chain’s anniversary campaign is a way to appeal not just to kids but also to their parents, many of whom grew up eating Happy Meals. Chances are, the mom or dad wheeling that minivan up to the drive-through window remembers getting, or at least coveting, one of the blast-from-the-past toys themselves. “If you had a positive experience there, you’re more likely to take your children,” Harris says.

To wit: another quote McDonald’s released as part of its anniversary campaign. The company did not make any executives available for an interview, but Colin Mitchell, the company’s senior vice president for global marketing, said in the release, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”

For parents, particularly working ones who might not have hours of time with their children, the proposition of spending around $3 for a “moment of bonding” is a pretty good one. Stanton says he has been in on focus groups that show mothers who work outside the home are anxious to make the most of whatever time they have with their kids. “They have this sense that they have to work hard at making a wonderful experience,” he says.

So it’s obvious that much of the Happy Meal’s appeal isn’t just about sustenance but also contentedness. Still, in the course of its 40-year history, the meal has also caused plenty of anxiety.

In 2002, two New York teenagers filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that the chain’s food, including Happy Meals, had contributed to their obesity. The case was eventually dismissed. Other legal challenges include a 2010 California lawsuit that sought to stop the company from giving away toys, which plaintiffs claimed were used to lure children into eating unhealthy food. That was ultimately tossed, too.

Even outside the courtroom, almost since the beginning, the product has been fingered as both a symbol and cause of childhood obesity. The city of San Francisco in 2011 imposed an ordinance banning fast-food restaurants from offering free toys. But the wily Golden Arches got around the rule by tacking on a 10-cent surcharge for the plaything.

In recent years, McDonald’s has stepped up efforts to make its kids’ offerings healthier. The meal had long included either a hamburger, cheeseburger or McNuggets, along with a side of fries and a small soda. In 2011, it added apple slices and shrank the serving size of fries to 1.1 ounces. In 2013, it removed soda as the default drink. Subsequent changes included lower-sugar juices, reformulating its chocolate milk and dropping cheeseburgers entirely. Last year, it announced new goals, promising that by 2022, more than half of Happy Meals would contain less than 650 mg sodium and fewer than 600 calories, with less than 10 percent of those coming from saturated fat and less than 10 percent from added sugar.

Sina Gallo, an assistant professor of nutrition at George Mason University, says there’s nothing wrong with children having an occasional Happy Meal, but that even with healthier options, the bigger danger is making them a regular part of a child’s diet — and worse, creating little eaters who grow up to be frequent fast-food consumers as grown-ups. “ We know that setting up behaviors very young can lead them to continue those behaviors into adolescence and adulthood,” Gallo says.


The Happy Meal, a triumph of marketing blamed for childhood obesity, is turning 40

Happy birthday, Happy Meal. The little box with the signature arches-as-handles is turning 40 this year, and McDonald’s is celebrating with a nostalgia-triggering revival of some of the most popular toys to have been included in the kid-targeted package over the decades.

Starting Thursday, the fast-food giant is including with its Happy Meals one of 17 throwback toys. There are 1980s-era “McNugget Buddies” decked out as cowboys and mail carriers, a 1997 Patti the Platypus Beanie Baby, a Power Ranger from 1995 and a 2013 Hello Kitty doll.

But it’s not those little bits of shiny plastic alone — or even the meal itself, usually a burger or some nuggets and pint-size fries — that explains the Happy Meal’s success, which has come despite years of controversy over its effect on kids’ diets. To understand its longevity and appeal, look no further than the quote the company supplied in a news release announcing its special anniversary offerings. “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world,” Steve Easterbrook, the former McDonald’s chief executive, said in the statement. (His words were written, obviously, before he was forced out after an affair with an employee.)

McDonald’s has been selling these “lasting memories,” along with its burgers and fries, for decades to both children and their parents.

“Their marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them” to McDonald’s, says Jennifer Harris, director of marketing initiatives at the University of Connecticut’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity.

John Stanton, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, says McDonald’s is following a long tradition of American advertisers. “ Charles Revson of Revlon used to say, ‘In the factories, we make cosmetics, but at counters, we sell hope.’ ” he says. “McDonald’s is saying ‘Yeah, th ere’s this stuff in this box, but this experience is going to make you feel good — happy.’ ”

The fast-food chain’s anniversary campaign is a way to appeal not just to kids but also to their parents, many of whom grew up eating Happy Meals. Chances are, the mom or dad wheeling that minivan up to the drive-through window remembers getting, or at least coveting, one of the blast-from-the-past toys themselves. “If you had a positive experience there, you’re more likely to take your children,” Harris says.

To wit: another quote McDonald’s released as part of its anniversary campaign. The company did not make any executives available for an interview, but Colin Mitchell, the company’s senior vice president for global marketing, said in the release, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”

For parents, particularly working ones who might not have hours of time with their children, the proposition of spending around $3 for a “moment of bonding” is a pretty good one. Stanton says he has been in on focus groups that show mothers who work outside the home are anxious to make the most of whatever time they have with their kids. “They have this sense that they have to work hard at making a wonderful experience,” he says.

So it’s obvious that much of the Happy Meal’s appeal isn’t just about sustenance but also contentedness. Still, in the course of its 40-year history, the meal has also caused plenty of anxiety.

In 2002, two New York teenagers filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that the chain’s food, including Happy Meals, had contributed to their obesity. The case was eventually dismissed. Other legal challenges include a 2010 California lawsuit that sought to stop the company from giving away toys, which plaintiffs claimed were used to lure children into eating unhealthy food. That was ultimately tossed, too.

Even outside the courtroom, almost since the beginning, the product has been fingered as both a symbol and cause of childhood obesity. The city of San Francisco in 2011 imposed an ordinance banning fast-food restaurants from offering free toys. But the wily Golden Arches got around the rule by tacking on a 10-cent surcharge for the plaything.

In recent years, McDonald’s has stepped up efforts to make its kids’ offerings healthier. The meal had long included either a hamburger, cheeseburger or McNuggets, along with a side of fries and a small soda. In 2011, it added apple slices and shrank the serving size of fries to 1.1 ounces. In 2013, it removed soda as the default drink. Subsequent changes included lower-sugar juices, reformulating its chocolate milk and dropping cheeseburgers entirely. Last year, it announced new goals, promising that by 2022, more than half of Happy Meals would contain less than 650 mg sodium and fewer than 600 calories, with less than 10 percent of those coming from saturated fat and less than 10 percent from added sugar.

Sina Gallo, an assistant professor of nutrition at George Mason University, says there’s nothing wrong with children having an occasional Happy Meal, but that even with healthier options, the bigger danger is making them a regular part of a child’s diet — and worse, creating little eaters who grow up to be frequent fast-food consumers as grown-ups. “ We know that setting up behaviors very young can lead them to continue those behaviors into adolescence and adulthood,” Gallo says.


Watch the video: 2014 Cut the Rope Hungry For Fruit Toys Complete Set in Happy Meal McDonalds Europe Unboxing


Comments:

  1. Duzil

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  2. Protesilaus

    They were wrong, of course.

  3. Deavon

    couldn't you go wrong?

  4. Bazilkree

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  5. Readman

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