Mar 29 2018

Turkish TV watchdog bans sweets ads during kids’ programmes

Turkey’s broadcasting watchdog RTÜK has announced a ban on television advertisements for unhealthy food during childrens’ programmes.

The new guidelines divide food products into red, amber and green categories, with red categorically banned and amber only being allowed to be shown with special permission.

The red category is made up of chocolates and sweets, wafers, energy bars, sweet sources and desserts, cakes, sweet biscuits, fruit-flavoured slices, chocolate-covered biscuits, cake mixes, crisps, fruit juices, energy drinks, all alcohol-free sugary or sweetened drinks, ice lollies and ice creams.

The measure is due to come into force from Apr. 11, 2018.

One man likely to support the measure is Nationalist Movement Party head Devlet Bahçeli, now part of a de facto coalition with the ruling Justice and Development Party, who brought up the issue of the heavy marketing of chocolates and biscuits at a rally in 2011.

The video went viral at the time due to Bahçeli’s pronunciation of the word for biscuit as püskevit rather than the French-derived bisküvi – a regional dialect pronunciation rare in Turkish political circles, where Istanbul Turkish accents are hegemonic.