Parents and Food Product Packaging

Child-targeted packaging usually contain multiple cues, such as cartoons, bright colours but also health labels (e.g., Nutri-score) and general health appeals. For parents, all these cues can be a valuable source of information, as they pursue different goals when making food decisions. Especially when making snacking choices for children, parental feeding goals can come into conflict with each other. As many child-targeted food packages contain products of low nutritional value, parents are often swayed into choosing fun and child-appealing packages while suppressing health related food preferences.  


CEPEC conducts research on how the assessment of packaging and its cues change when different food goals are primed on the one hand. On the other hand, we also want to examine how the exposure to different packaging elements can effectively alter one’s goal system and evaluation of goal importance. With this research we want to formulate powerful recommendations for public policy and advertising practice.


This topic is currently part of the PhD research of Bram Uyttenhove, under the guidance of Liselot Hudders, Dieneke Van de Sompel and Ini Vanwesenbeeck.

Food packaging