IFBA is committed to transparency and accountability and to reporting on members’ compliance with the pledge programmes and evaluating the impact of such programmes.
Global, regional and national reports
The IFBA Global Policy on Marketing Communications to Children
Since 2009, Accenture Media Management has conducted an assessment of IFBA members’ compliance with IFBA’s Global Policy on Marketing Communications to Children, in a globally representative sample of markets. In 2017, five markets were chosen for the assessment – Colombia, India, New Zealand, the Phillippines and South Africa. Accenture reviewed members’ activities in TV and print advertising (in 2016 and 2017). IFBA also piloted a programme with five Self-Regulatory Organizations (SROs) to review members’ compliance on three online platforms : company-owned websites, company-owned YouTube channels and third-party websites. Consistent with prior years, IFBA members continued to demonstrate a high rate of compliance in TV, print and online advertising:
- 99.6% for television
- 96% for company-owned websites ; 95% for company-owned YouTube channels ; and 100% for third-party websites ; and
- 47/48 print publications.
The EU Pledge
In 2017, EU Pledge members commissioned Accenture Media Management to review their compliance with the commitment relating to food and beverage advertising on TV in six sample EU markets – France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Romania and Spain. The European Advertising Standards Alliance (EASA) was also commissioned to review members’ branded websites and social media profiles on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram for compliance were monitored in six markets – Bulgaria, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain. This is the ninth annual monitoring report of the EU Pledge and the record of compliance is positive and consistent with previous years:
- 97.4% compliant in TV advertising (690,943 spots reviewed)
- 99% compliant on websites (224 national brand websites reviewed)
- 98% compliant of social media profiles (107 brand social media profiles reviewed)
The Union of European Soft Drink Associations (UNESDA)
In 2012/2013, UNESDA appointed the independent monitoring company and broadcast expert, Ebiquity, to audit compliance with its commitments on marketing to children to the European Platform for Action on Diet, Physical Activity and Health. The five largest EU markets (representing approximately 65% of the EU population) were monitored: France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK. Ebiquity found UNESDA members were:
- 99.35% compliant in TV advertising (consistent with the independent audits of 2006 and 2010 which each recorded compliance rates of 99%)
- 100% compliant in print media (consistent with the 100% compliance level in 2010 and the 99.72% compliance level in 2006)
- 100% compliant in online media (consistent with the 100% compliance level achieved in 2006 and 2010)
- 100% compliant in the digisphere; and
- 95.11% compliant on company-owned websites
The Responsible Children’s Marketing Initiative (RCMI) and Quick Service Restaurant Initiative for Responsible Advertising and Marketing to Children (QSRI)
The Australian Food and Grocery Council’s report for 2016 involves two monitoring components: an external audit and complaint adjudications by the Advertising Standards Board (ASB). More than 145,000 hours of television viewing time was examined. Overall, compliance with the RCMI and the QSRI core principles during their seventh year of operation was high, with a compliance rate of 99.25% across both initiatives. Results of the external audit found that the provision of bonus airtime by the television network, the late scheduling of movies and last minute programme changes continue to present compliance issues for signatories. The ASB considered nine cases (all resulting from a single complaint) regarding RCMI and QSRI during 2016 (less than 2% of all cases considered by the ASB). In one case relating to RCMI the ASB determined the ad was found to be in breach of the initiative; the other eight cases were dismissed.
The Canadian Children's Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative (CAI)
In October 2017, Advertising Standards Canada (ASC) released the 2016 compliance report. ASC reported excellent compliance by the 17 participating companies in meeting the programme commitments. This is the first full year of compliance with the category-specific uniform nutrition criteria that came into effect at the end of 2015 (to replace company-specific nutrition criteria) for products advertised to children under 12 years. ASC reported that by early 2016, products had been reformulated or were no longer planned to be advertised directly to children under 12. ASC also conducts an annual spot check of children’s television advertising. In 2016, the spot check covered 48 hours of programming during which 1,231 commercials were aired. The analysis showed that the majority of television advertising directed to children was for toys, games, DVDs, in-theatre movies and attractions - food and beverage commercials accounted for 11% of commercials aired, and all were for CAIapproved products with improved nutrition - almost two-thirds for grain products with the balance including dairy products, quick serve restaurants and snack products.
The U.S. Children's Food and Beverage Marketing Initiative (CFBAI)
Published in December 2019, the Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative’ (CFBAI’s) 13th annual report details participant compliance and progress in 2018. CFBAI monitors compliance with CFBAI commitments and current trends in child-directed media. This includes regular assessment of food advertising on children’s TV networks, child-directed websites, and other digital content, apps, and other covered media. The 2018 report found excellent compliance by all CFBAI participants. In 2018, CFBAI participants also agreed to strengthen the 2011 Uniform Nutrition Criteria, which CFBAI uses to determine which foods are eligible for advertising to children. The “Revised Criteria” are the result of a two-year review to ensure the criteria reflect established nutrition policy guidance, dietary recommendations, and regulatory developments. CFBAI participants planned to implement the Revised Criteria by January 1, 2020.
GCC Responsible Food and Beverage Marketing to Children Pledge
In 2019, IFBA members based in the GCC commissioned Ipsos UAE to review compliance with their commitment on food and beverage advertising in the UAE and Kindgdom of Saudi Arabia. The data examined continues the 2018 trend of 100% compliance in TV and print and shows an improvement for internet compliance from 99.7% :
- 100% compliance in TV advertising (413,481 spots reviewed over 113 channels)
- 100% compliance in print media (168 publications reviewd)
- 100% compliance on the internet (162 websites reviewed)