The unstoppable Eat Them to Defeat Them campaign from Veg Power and ITV has led to an astonishing £92 million of vegetable sales during the past three years – including one delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic – according to newly released data from Pearl Metrics.
Desperately trying to find any mechanism to reduce obesity and get kids to eat more healthy, most efforts from philanthropic groups, government agencies and others have failed. But Eat Them to Defeat Them not only has put one billion more vegetable portions into children’s bodies but also gotten 60% of them to say they do eat more of them because of the effort.
“This campaign has been able to make a real difference to what gets in shopping baskets and ultimately in tummies,” Susie Braun, Director of Social Purpose, ITV said. “It’s incredible to see such a huge, proven uplift in vegetable sales across the country as a result of this collaborative campaign.”
One million kids across nearly 3,900 schools have taken part in schools programmes around the campaign, with veg tasting sessions, teaching aids and games. They also received vegetable sticker charts to track their eating habits.
“Eat Them to Defeat Them is making an improvement in children’s diet both during and well beyond the weeks of the campaign,” Dan Parker, Chief Executive, Veg Power said. “This is great news for children’s health as well our veg growers and for the environment, too.”
According to data from IRI, the Eat Them campaign in Year 1 was 1.6% of all vegetable sales in the UK. During the second year, it jumped to 2.4% and then rose again in Year 3 to 2.9%.
Seven retailers – Aldi, ASDA, Coop, Lidl, Sainsburys, Tesco and Waitrose – and one big brand, Dole, are sponsoring this year’s national Eat Them to Defeat marketing blitz. T V advertisers say they have reached 46 million people, including more than 425,000 kids, through the campaign