Enhanced 2012 commitments
Initially, EU Pledge member companies committed to not advertise products to children under 12 years of age (except for products which fulfill specific nutrition criteria) and defined “advertising to children under 12 years” as advertising to media audiences with a minimum of 50% of children under 12 years.
EU Pledge member companies enhanced this commitment by lowering the audience threshold to 35% of children under 12 years. This tougher threshold has the effect of covering more media channels that have a significant child audience.
Furthermore, regarding online media, the EU Pledge originally applied only to third-party internet advertising. Since January 2012, EU Pledge member companies apply this commitment also to company-owned websites. By extending the coverage of the commitment to cover both third-party online advertising and brand websites, the EU Pledge covers online marketing comprehensively.
- No advertising of products to children under 12 years, except for products which fulfill specific nutrition criteria based on accepted scientific evidence and/or applicable national and international dietary guidelines. For the purpose of this initiative, “advertising to children under 12 years” means advertising to media audiences with a minimum of 35% of children under 12 years. This rule will be applicable as of 1 January 2012 throughout the EU.
- In the online sphere, the above commitment will apply to marketing communications for food and beverage products on company-owned websites, in addition to third-party internet advertising. Member companies will develop and follow detailed guidance to apply this commitment by 1 January 2012.
- No communication related to products in primary schools, except where specifically requested by, or agreed with, the school administration for educational purposes.
 Until the end of 2014, individual companies must either choose not to advertise any of their products to children under 12 or apply their own “specific nutrition criteria based on accepted scientific evidence” – click here for their individual corporate commitments made within the framework of the Pledge. From the end of 2014, common EU Pledge Nutrition Criteria will apply to those member companies that use nutrition criteria – click here for the criteria. Those companies that do not currently advertise any of their products to children will continue to apply that policy.