Drinks retailer Coca-Cola Amatil and Sydney Olympic Park management have responded to calls from parents to stop marketing sugary drinks to kids at the Sydney Olympic Park Splash Festival.
For the last 15 years, the Splash Festival event has featured a giant inflatable slide with two Coca-Cola bottles at the bottom, clearly promoting the sugary drink to children taking part in the festival. Advocacy group, Parents’ Voice, formerly known as The Parents’ Jury, contacted the organisers and Coca-Cola Amatil, asking that the promotional items be removed and that the drinks retailer and venue immediately cease promoting sugary drinks to children who attend the event.
Parents’ Voice is delighted that both Sydney Olympic Park and Coca-Cola Amatil have positively reacted to its request and have agreed to remove the promotional slide from future events.
Alice Pryor, Campaigns Manager for Parents’ Voice, said: “This is a real victory for parent power. The slide was brought to our attention by one of our members who saw the Coca-Cola bottles and felt that it was completely inappropriate to market sugary drinks to young children at this family event.
“When we drew the issue to the attention of Coca-Cola Amatil and Sydney Olympic Park, we pointed out that one in four Australian children are obese or overweight and that sugary drinks play a major part in weight gain and tooth decay in children. Our members also believe that venues such as Sydney Olympic Park should be a safe space where children are not subjected to this type of promotion.”
Mum of two from Hurlstone Park, Sydney, Lynne Scouller, did not want to see the Coca-Cola slide as part of the aquatic centre activities: “The Splash Festival is a great event for children during the school holidays and parents love to see kids take part in physical activity. However, we also educate our children about the consequences of consuming sugary drinks and don’t want to see them promoted at fun, family events like the Splash Festival.”
Ms Pryor added: “Our members are concerned about the environmental causes of obesity in children and we are very encouraged to see Coca-Cola Amatil and Sydney Olympic Park acting responsibly by responding to our call to remove this slide. We would like to see an end to all marketing of sugary drinks to children and we applaud this positive step of removing the promotional slide.”
Angela Mallon 0404 570 525 email@example.com
Alice Pryor 0416 219 261 firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to Editor
Parents’ Voice is an online network of parents who are interested in improving the food and activity environments of Australian children. Formerly known as The Parents’ Jury, Parents’ Voice was formed in 2004 and represents thousands of Australian parents. Parents’ Voice is supported by Cancer Council Australia, Diabetes Victoria, VicHealth, YMCA Australia and the Bluearth Foundation.