Tickled pink about milk

carton of 'pink' milkEver thought about how the colour of food packaging might influence our eating choices? Nope, me neither but I admit it's a lot to consider on a Friday afternoon.

But then a friend told me a story about her daughter and how she really, really, really wanted some "pink milk". By the way, she's 3 so an expert on milk (my friend's daughter that is, not my friend, who's an expert on lots of other stuff).

And when my friend asked her daughter to explain some more, she found out that she didn't mean pink-coloured or flavoured milk. Oh no mummy, but the milk that came in a pink carton.

And to a little girl, pink coloured stuff is where it's all at. I know exactly how this works - my two lads are all about blue. Sure, anything red or green is fine and yellow is probably just ok but Blue is the colour for them. You could say it tickles them pink.

And that's where the food bit comes in.

My friend also referred me of a school-based research project, where the researchers found that consumption rates of low-fat milk changed based on the colour of the carton; in the pilot study, the cartons were blue which led to a larger proportion of boys choosing them. In the subsequent study, the same milk cartons were pink in colour and yep, you guessed it, the girls had higher consumption rates.

So choosing a non-gender specific colour on food packaging might be better suited when targeting boys and girls to drink low-fat milk.

And a colour more-suited to men for lower-fat foods might be the way to go too.

I'm off for some R&R with the kids next week so my colleague Aileen will be on the blog (thanks Aileen)

Have a great weekend.

Posted: 25/05/2011 14:00:00 by Colman Kelly
Filed under: Food, Food colourings

About Me

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Colman Kelly
Hi, I’m Dermot Moriarty and I’m the communications manager for safefood. My background is in advertising & public relations and I work on our awareness campaigns, promotional activities and market research. I’m also an occasional blogger. In my spare time, I’m a fan of history books, sport and cooking (though not all at the same time) and am trying to get back into running. I live in Co. Dublin with my wife and two young boys who are growing up way too fast.