Fruit drinks are the most commonly consumed sugar-sweetened beverage among young children. Fruit drinks carry many nutrition-related claims on the front of package (FOP). Nutrition-related claims affect individuals’ perceptions of the healthfulness of products and purchase intentions, often creating a “health halo” effect. The aims of this study were to describe the prevalence of FOP nutrition-related claims on fruit drinks purchased by households with young children and to examine the association between claims and the nutritional profile of fruit drinks. The sample included 2059 fruit drinks purchased by households with children 0 to 5 years old participating in Nielsen Homescan in 2017. Almost all (97%) fruit drinks sampled had at least 1 nutrition-related FOP claim. Implied natural claims such as “natural flavors” were the most common (55% of products), followed by claims about the presence of juice or nectar (49%). Claims about vitamin C (33%), sugar (29%), and calories (23%) were also common. Fruit drinks with vitamin C, juice or nectar, fruit or fruit flavor, and overt natural claims were higher in calories and sugar and less likely to contain NCSs compared with products without these claims. Fruit drinks with calorie, sugar, NCS, implied natural, and other claims were lower in calories and sugar and more likely to contain NCSs compared with products without these claims.
Published: January 2021
ID #: 76337
Journal: J Acad Nutr Diet
Authors: Duffy EW, Hall MG, Dillman Carpentier FR, Musicus AA, Meyer ML, Rimm E, Smith Taillie L
Nutrition-related claims lead parents to choose less healthy drinks for young children: a randomized trial in a virtual convenience storeConsumption of sugar-sweetened beverages, including fruit drinks, contributes to childhood obesity. We aimed to examine whether nutrition-related claims on fruit drinks influence purchasing among parents and lead to misperceptions of healthfulness. We conducted an experiment in a virtual convenience store with 2219 parents of children ages 1-5 y. Parents were randomly assigned to view fruit More