A Study of Food Advertising in Magazines in South Africa

Zulfa Abrahams, Norman J. Temple, Zandile J. Mchiza, Nelia P. Steyn

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Articlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Little is known about food advertising in the print media in South Africa or other developing countries. We investigated the extent to which different ethnic population groups of South Africa are exposed to magazine advertising for food and beverages. Five different magazines (n = 162 issues) with the most adult readers were assessed. We identified 959 food-related advertisements. These were for food and beverages (80.9%), dietary supplements (10.4%), and slimming products (8.7%). Of the 658 advertisements for specific food and beverages, most (59.3%) were for unhealthy foods. Numerous cases of misleading health/nutrition claims were seen. Government interventions are required to reduce the advertising of unhealthy food-related products and to curb misleading advertising.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)429-441
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Hunger and Environmental Nutrition
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul. 2017


  • Magazine advertisements
  • South Africa
  • food advertising
  • health claims
  • nutrition claims


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