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‘Eat Them To Defeat Them’ returns for sixth year

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‘Eat Them To Defeat Them’ returns for sixth year

Veg Power, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky Media’s campaign, now in its 6th year, returns with its campaign to increase children’s vegtable consumption across the UK…

Now in its sixth year, the campaign, originally launched by ITV and Veg Power and proven to increase children’s vegetable consumption, aims to build on the behaviour change success achieved in previous years. It will launch during the final of ITV’s The Masked Singer on Saturday 17th February.

80% of children in the UK are not eating enough vegetables and worryingly a third of kids are eating less than a portion per day.1 This major public health issue will not only harm many aspects of children’s health, but it will have huge ramifications later in life. Research indicates that poor diet in childhood not only disadvantages them as kids but it extends into adulthood, resulting in increased healthcare costs and reduced productivity.

The Eat Them To Defeat Them campaign inspires kids to eat more veg by combining the power of advertising with a highly effective schools’ programme. It brings together a huge alliance including TV advertising, celebrities, supermarkets, chefs, schools, communities and families. Since it launched in 2019, over 1.5 million different children from 4,884 primary and special schools have benefited from the schools’ programme.

The campaign has been sponsored by major supermarket and food brands Aldi, Birds Eye, Co-op, Sainsbury’s and Tesco. Media agency, Essence, has also secured pro-bono contributions from advertising and media partners, including Mumsnet, Spotify, First News, Delicious and others to extend the reach of the campaign and encourage children to feel more enthusiastic about eating vegetables.

Dan Parker, Chief Executive, Veg Power:

“Our evaluation has shown that this campaign is having a much-needed positive impact on children’s diets and we can’t wait for more children and their families to benefit. We know that changing behaviour and dietary health in the UK isn’t going to happen overnight, but we are delighted with the inroads our campaign and others working in this space have achieved. As always a massive thank you to everyone who has supported us this year!”

The 2024 Eat Them To Defeat Them campaign is an alliance between ITV, Channel 4 and Sky Media who have collectively contributed over £18m of advertising to this campaign since it began.

This year’s campaign will return to TV screens on Saturday 17th February. The schools’ programme, launching on Monday 19th February, is set to reach 637,000 children from 2,370 schools across the UK, including all primary schools in Wales due to funding support from the Welsh Government. Returning to schools with a new creative theme ‘The Big Chomp’, children will be encouraged to defeat the veg one bite at a time with supporting visuals and fun activities. All this extra chewing will have the added bonus of protecting children’s teeth from the bacteria that cause tooth decay, the leading cause of hospital admissions in under 10s and another UK public health issue.

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