A slew of the largest food and beverage producers in Canada have reiterated their commitment to curbing advertising to children under 12.

Firms including General Mills, Kraft Foods and Mars have agreed to change or stop their advertising after last year signing up to a voluntary initiative to promote healthy eating in the country.

Eight companies, including General Mills, Kraft and Weston Bakeries, have pledged to only advertise healthier foods that meet local recognised nutritional standards.

A further eight firms, including Coca-Cola Co., Mars and PepsiCo, have insisted that they will no longer advertise to children under 12.

"It's time for a new way of thinking and acting, and I commend responsible industry members who are preparing to help tackle this issue," said Canada's health minister Tony Clement.

PepsiCo said its own advertising strategy exceeds the guidelines set down in last year's initiative.

"We are committed to the professional and responsible advertising of our products," said Lori Kelly, PepsiCo Canada's health and wellness marketing leader.