Little Shop miniatures. Photo: APN
Foodstuffs' Little Shop miniature toy grocery items
promotion has been criticised by Geoff Simmons on Gareth
Morgan's web site Gareth's World in a piece headlined "New
World wants to turn your kids into fat zombie customers".
Simmons said the promotion "was so successful for New World
the first time around, they've brought it back. And why
wouldn't they? Food manufacturers are falling over each other
to get their foods immortalised in the form of a plastic
miniature. It gets people in the door, and probably makes
money for New World to boot.
"The problem is that, like most advertising, only the
companies that can afford it will take part. Those are the
companies with bigger margins, which usually means they are
selling highly processed food, stripped of nutrients and
packed full of sugar, fat and salt. That is the only way to
make food sit on the shelf for so long without going off,
which makes the food cheaper to sell, which leaves room for
an advertising budget."
But Antionette Shallue, Foodstuffs spokeswoman, said her
business knew from feedback last year that Little Shop items
were used by parents, teachers, nutritionists and special
needs educators to, through the use of play, help children
learn about healthy eating, maths and other subjects.
"It's our belief that this sort of positive play and
education for children is a good thing for our community and
we are very proud of our Little Shop promotion.
"We would also dispute claims around the nutritional value of
the brands used in this year's Little Shop. The selection of
products are representative of the types of everyday products
we know our customers buy when they shop with us. This year,
as with previous, there is a wide range of products including
fresh vegetables, fruit and meat, examples of these include
bananas, pineapple, potatoes, fresh chicken and tuna," she
"There is Little Shop milk and cheese and we know dairy is
key to ensuring children have enough calcium in their diet
and grow strong bones. Eggs also feature and eggs are
considered one of the most nutritious foods on the planet,
containing a little bit of almost every nutrient we need.
Another product which is used almost every day in most Kiwi
households is cooking oil, and this year we have included
rice bran oil which is known to have health benefits over
other oils due to its higher levels of antioxidants," she
By Anne Gibson of the New Zealand Herald