French consumer activists have slammed television food advertising, branding the food industry “obesity manufacturers”. The Union Fédérale des Consommateurs (UFC) briefed the press on the findings of a study involving 352 families and 704 people.

During the two-week research period, the UFC monitored 217 children’s TV spots for food products. No less than 89% of them were for products with high fat or sugar contents, according to the UFC.

Generations of French parents have actively discouraged snacking. However, the current study found that 60% of children are now asking for cakes, pastries or confectionery between meals. Meanwhile at breakfast some 64% of children are asking for high sugar content cereals and other heavily advertised products.

The full study is published in the latest issue of the UFC’s magazine Que Choisir. Supporting files can be found on its website at