Ads hit back at city health campaign
A counter-attack has been launched in the city’s war on obesity.
A $1 million ad campaign produced by the non-profit Center for Consumer Freedom knocks the city for its PR blitz against sweetened drinks and its ban on trans-fats.
“When did the Big Apple become Big Brother?” say the ads, which began appearing in newspapers Friday.
Similar ads will appear next week on local cable.
“This is targeted primarily at the idea of the food police and the nanny state,” said James Bowers, creative director at the Washington-based organization.
The group — which sponsors campaigns defending products such as corn syrup and argues against taxes on unhealthy foods — has been described by critics as a front for the food and restaurant industry. The organization acknowledges receiving donations from the industry but says it advocates only for consumers.
The city health department defended its own campaign against sugared drinks, which include graphic ads on subways, and took its own jab at the ads, one of which appears Wednesday in amNewYork.
“People are smart enough to know when they see something that is trying to sell them a certain kind of food,” said Cathy Nonas, director of physical activity and nutrition at the health department.