Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Kids Prefer Anything (Even Veggies) With a McDonald’s Wrapper

Stanford researchers found kids prefer the taste of food when it’s wrapped in McDonald’s packaging, according to an ABC News report. Basically, they served pairs of identical foods, one in plain wrapping and the other in McDonald’s, to kids. Of course, the kids said the stuff wrapped in McDonald’s packaging was better. Even if it was plain ol’ carrots (60 percent of the kids favored the McDonald’s-branded stuff).

Of course, advertising is the evil culprit. “The results help support calls for limiting marketing to young children,” one doctor told ABC News.

But wouldn’t kids prefer anything wrapped in a colorful wrapper over plain paper? I mean, you could have wrapped one carrot in a red wrapper with white smiley faces, another in plain white paper, and which one do you think the kids would prefer?

Another factor they’re not considering is the actual brand experience. When kids eat McDonald’s it tastes good. Advertising be damned, if you eat something from a certain packaging that tastes good, you’re going to prefer other things from that packaging compared to plain packaging.

I’m not saying advertising has nothing to do with the study results, but I think it’s a much smaller player in the results. And why didn’t ABC News go out and find that angle? I combed through the story, they don’t mention either of the two points I brought up, and I’m sure there are more.

Pound360 Archive

About Me

My photo
I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.