Calls for 'responsible marketing' from Coca-Cola as Christmas truck rolls into Wembley

5 December 2017

A world-renowned drinks company are being called to be more responsible with their marketing of sugary drinks, amid concerns that a Christmas promotion is targeting children and is contributing to high obesity levels in the borough.

 

Coca-Cola are once again running their Christmas 'Holidays are coming' marketing campaign, with televised commercials featuring a festively-lit red Coca-Cola branded lorry - which will be rolling into Wembley on Friday, December 8.

 

As part of the lorry's visit, the famous company will be giving out free drinks, but town hall chiefs have however raised concerns that such promotion of sugary drinks is 'part of the problem' and contributes to Brent's issues with childhood obesity, where nearly a half (43 per cent) of children aged 11 are overweight or obese.

 

Brent Council has written to Coca-Cola bosses to ask that the company promote their brand 'responsibly' this Friday and limit the drinks given away to their 'diet' and 'zero sugar' options only.

 

Cllr Krupesh Hirani, Brent Council's Cabinet Member for Community Wellbeing said:

 

"It's great to see Coca-Cola getting into the festive spirit once again. However, in a borough where nearly half of 11-year-olds are overweight there is an obvious concern that there is this focus on encouraging children to consume what is a highly-sugary drink.

 

"Mums and dads in Brent have enough of a challenge to keep their children healthy and we hope that with a little bit of responsible marketing and one small change, Coca-Cola can be a part of the solution to Brent's obesity issues, rather than part of the problem."

 

He added:

 

"With nine teaspoons of sugar in each 330ml can of Coca-Cola, their flagship product clearly has a negative impact on people's health. With obesity and diabetes levels so high in the Borough, we are calling on Coca Cola to stop promoting their sugary drinks to our residents. They are entitled to market their products and we are calling on them to promote their diet and zero sugar drinks instead."