Bite Back's Social Experiment - exposing the tactics of the food industry

Updated: Nov 7, 2019

The next decade seems to be decisive on many issues, at least as activists in different fields say, all set out to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce sex trafficking, increase gender equality by 2030. So did Jamie Oliver launch a Bite Back 2030 campaign aimed at reducing childhood obesity. According to statistics, children and the UK are the most obese in Western Europe, but this is a much broader problem. As Oliver claims, his goal is to halve childhood obesity by 2030. The activity consists not only in offering healthy food recipes and pointing out the harmfulness of junk food, but also in actively and continuously participating in campaigns to put health ahead of profits in the food industries.

Jamie is otherwise known for his energy when he prepares food, so anyone who wants to follow him should be really prepared and fit to write down everything Jamie says about his recipes. This and such Jamie Oliver has found inspiration from Fridays For Future youth-led climate change movement to amplify the voice of young people for healthier eating. Jamie has proven himself to be energetic and positive when it comes to activism, not only when it comes to food preparation, though he always arrives to get some advice by the way, such as how to make crispy vegetables.

Bite Back has designed a social experiment to unravel the deliberate tactics of the food industry that manipulate consumer preferences and influence their choices, including how to feed themselves. These decisions are especially devastating for teenagers.

On September 28th, eight teenagers turned up to a restaurant for what they believed was the start of a social experiment. Little did they know, that it was really the end of it.

Throughout the week they had been targeted with a host of advertising techniques, including social media influencers, posters and radio ads, to highlight the power the food marketing industry has over their choices.

There were over 50 items on the menu - yet we correctly predict in every instance what they were going to choose.

The experiment resulted in a film that featured no actors, no staged reactions and no scripted responses.

After showing the preview, the entire room fell silent. It was shocking to see how warped the food system is. I’m sure if you watch it, you’ll feel the same.

The social experiment was directly backed by statistics too. A report commissioned by the team found that over two-thirds of young people said that a brand’s marketing would entice them to try a new food or drink.

Meanwhile, according to the Food Standards Agency criteria, nearly 90 per cent of products on display at children’s eye level in UK supermarkets are unhealthy.

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