A comparative analysis of unhealthy food and beverage television advertising to children in Thailand, between 2014 and 2022

Publication Name

Globalization and Health


Background: Food marketing is a key factor that influences children’s dietary behaviors. This study assessed the nature and extent of food and beverage advertising on television (TV) in 2014 and 2022 in Thailand. Methods: TV was recorded for one week in March 2014 and in May 2022 from 7-9am and 3-7 pm on weekends, and 3-7 pm on weekdays across two channels (64 h recorded each year). The nutrient profile model from Bureau of Nutrition, Ministry of Public Health Thailand was used to classify food and non-alcoholic beverages as: Group A (‘healthy’), Group B (‘less unhealthy’) or Group C (‘unhealthy’). Results: In 2014, 475 food advertisements were identified, with on average of 6.3 unhealthy food advertisements per hour. In 2022, 659 food advertisements were identified, with an average of 9.2 unhealthy food advertisement per hour. In both time periods, the most frequently advertised food products were non-alcoholic beverages. The rate of unhealthy food advertising per hour of broadcast was significantly higher than for other moderately unhealthy and healthy foods, and was also significantly higher in 2022 than in 2014. Conclusions: Food and beverage advertising on Thai television is predominantly promotes unhealthy foods and, in particular, sugar-sweetened beverages. Therefore, Thai Government should enact new legislation to protect children from food TV ads in order to control both the frequency and nature of unhealthy TV food marketing to protect the health of Thai children.

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Funding Sponsor

Mahidol University



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