Processed Food, Diabetes, Bad Branding

Two ad campaigns, one from Conagra’s Chef Boyardee and one from Tyson, are particularly heinous in light of newly released statistics on diabetes.

One celebrates kids complaining about vegetables and other nutritious foods they hate. The ad pushes pushes fried chicken nuggets from Tyson as an ideal alternative:

The other features some moms punishing another mom for daring to tell kids to that Chef Boyardee has vegetables in it. The Conagra Chef Boyardee campaign is all about hiding the need to eat healthy food under the tagline: “Obviously delicious. Secretly nutritious.” The brand is rather proud of these reprehensible spots and featured them on their Web site (since taken down).

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that one in three Americans will suffer from type 2 diabetes by 2050 if the current trend continues. If telling kids to eat their vegetables–my parents used to MAKE me eat my vegetables–is wrong, the trend will most definitely continue.

I’m not an advocate for food police, but with such grim statistics, brand advertising that punishes mothers who try to educate children on the value of eating their vegetables and celebrating kids who prefer processed fried chicken is incredibly wrong headed. Both the Tyson and Chef Boyardee campaigns are building brands on unhealthy propositions (for kids and for the brands).