In another example of food marketers' growing public support of efforts aimed at curbing childhood obesity, Kellogg's and Whole Foods Market will be among the sponsors of the "Fun and Fit as a Family" mini-festival within the 2009 Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival.
The South Beach, Fla.-based festival, to be held Feb. 19-22, established the two-day supplementary "Fun and Fit" mini-fest on nearby Jungle Island last year. The new area, featuring exhibitions and activities informing parents and children about adopting healthy eating habits and combating childhood obesity, drew 9,000 parents and children last year.
Kellogg's will relocate its existing "Kellogg's Kidz Kitchen" events from the festival's main beach location to the "Fun and Fit" area for 2009. The three-year-old Kidz Kitchen concept features culinary demonstrations with a healthy focus by star chefs. Past stars have included Rachael Ray, Giada De Laurentiis, Emeril Lagasse and Jamie Oliver.
The fitness-fest sponsorship ties in with Kellogg's announcement that it is applying "Kellogg Global Nutrient Criteria" (based on a "broad review of scientific reports") to all products currently marketed to children around the world. Products that do not meet the criteria will either be reformulated or will no longer be marketed to children under 12 by the end of 2008.
Whole Foods will be a supporting sponsor of the "Fun and Fit" area is in addition to its status as a new platinum sponsor of the overall festival and new title sponsor of the main event's "Grand Tasting Village." In the Tasting Village, the retailer will showcase foods/culinary creations available in its stores.
The Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival, going into its eighth year, attracted nearly 40,000 visitors and raised $1.7 million for the School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at Florida International University in 2008. The event is presented by Food & Wine magazine and produced by the university and Southern Wine & Spirits of Florida, with support from regional government.