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Updated 26 October 2015

Kids want fun in foods

Over half of American children say they wish they could have more fun when eating their meals and snacks, according to a new study.

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The study was published by kid marketing group Just Kid Inc, the new study claims to be the first quantitative study to look at a kids’ point of view of what is fun when it comes to food.

And the findings suggest that while manufacturers are busy trying to keep parents happy by making their products healthier, they may be overlooking what really matters to children.

"Despite the critical correlation of fun to eating habits, little is known about what fun means to kids in the world of food and beverages," said Dr Michelle Poris, a child psychologist at Just Kid Inc.

"While there are major age differences in what defines a fun attribute for food and beverages, there are several that are common across the three age groups for kids 2-5, 6-8 and 9-12 years of age," she added.

Kids agree on main points

According to the study, most children aged between 2 and 12 agree on a number of main points that make food and drinks fun to consume.

These include the ability to eat it with fingers, as well as the ability to “dip or scoop it”. Another important point to kids is to be able to add things to the product themselves, such as sprinkles, sauces or toppings.

Most children also agree that they like products with filling or frosting, as well as ones with a “fun shape or cool colours”. Finally, kids also said they liked to be able to take the products with them.

'Inject taste and fun'

"The key to getting kids to eat more nutritious meals is to inject the same levels of taste and fun they experience when consuming less healthy snacks," said Just Kid Inc president George Carey.

Just Kid Inc’s new FUNdamentals study was based on responses from a nationally representative sample of 3230, 6-12 year olds and moms of 2-5 year olds.

The company, which claims to be one of the country's leading children's marketing groups, says it specialises in developing kid-validated strategic growth platforms around the notion of fun that can be used to provide fact-based guidance on new product development, brand planning and promotions.

Read more:

Diets for toddlers

Eating problems in toddlers

 
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