Cricketers accused of becoming ‘vending machines for junk food’

All eight teams feature prominent KP Snacks branding

Friday, October 4, 2019

The England and Wales Cricket Board has faced criticism from health campaigners for offering KP Snacks prime advertising space during its upcoming tournament.

Teams in The Hundred contest will wear shirts that prominently feature KP Snacks products including Skips, Hula-Hoops and Butterkist.

Caroline Cerny from Obesity Health Alliance said children will “pay the price” for the association between “junk food” and sport.

“Junk food brands' sponsorship of popular sporting events is just another way they make sure their unhealthy products take centre stage in children's minds,” she said.

“We know that the relentless exposure to junk food marketing that children today are exposed to influences their food choices and how much they eat.”

Barbara Crowther from the Children's Food Campaign said players will look like “vending machines for junk food”.

“Even (English cricketer) Ben Stokes would be hard pushed in one game of The Hundred to clock up the 400 runs - or five miles - required to run off just 100g of McCoy's cheese and onion crisps,” she said.

Marketing director of KP Snacks, Kevin McNair, said the company “aims to encourage families across the UK to be more active through cricket”.

The managing director of The Hundred, Sanjay Patel, said it was working with KP Snacks to “demonstrate the many benefits that playing cricket has and encourage balanced, healthy and active lifestyles”.

The short-form 100-ball cricket contest will start in July next year.

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