Canadians support a Bloomberg-inspired ban

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The latest Harris/Decima research shows that Canadians are open to receiving more information about food choices and orders they make. Two-thirds of Canadian adults report liking the idea of seeing detailed nutritional information such as fat and sodium levels available at all restaurants - not just at fast food restaurants. And women are most likely to exhibit an affinity for the availability of such information.

 

 

  • Being able to make an informed choice is clearly desired while having these choices made for us is not. While half of Canadians report being aware of New York City Mayor Bloomberg’s proposed ban on the sale of large orders of pop and other sugary drinks, two-thirds indicate that they would support a similar ban in their area. There does appear to be some skepticism around the effectiveness of such a ban which is where the provision of reliable information can be most impactful.

According to Vice-President Susan Sanei-Stamp: “Restaurants can become a readily available resource for Canadians to help them make healthier food decisions. Helping guests become more cognizant of their actions and raising awareness levels of the different food choices available.”

  • The research reveals that nearly half of those who believe Bloomberg’s proposed ban can have an impact feel it can help people become more aware of how much pop they consume in general, while a quarter believes it can help people re-think the number of calories they consume in a given day. Ensuring such information makes it to the forefront of consumers’ minds is key – and doing so early. A hurdle that such a ban would have to surmount is getting buy-in from younger Canadians as they are, interestingly enough, less likely than the “Pepsi Generation” and those older to support a similar ban in their area.

Adds Sanei-Stamp: “Canadians are telling us that being told what you can or cannot have isn’t the same as providing guidance. They’re open to having their awareness levels elevated when it comes to their own behaviour and there is a wealth of industry players who could take on an educational role.”

Each week, Harris/Decima interviews just over 1000 Canadians through teleVox, the company’s national telephone omnibus survey. The data for this poll were gathered between June 27 to 30, 2012. A sample of the same size has a margin of error of 3.1%, 19 times out of 20.