Getting on the healthy eating bus, Cartoon Network characters, or at least their promo efforts, are about to get leaner and meaner. The net has established food-oriented character licensing guidelines based on the nutritional standards developed by the Institute of Medicine and the US Dietary Guidelines.
Under its new policy, Cartoon Network will limit the use of its original characters from series targeting kids under 12 to food and beverage products that meet the now-established nutritional criteria. So food endorsed by the likes of Bloo from Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends, for example, cannot exceed a calorie cap or limits set on total fat, saturated fat, added trans fat, sodium and sugar and must meet a requirement for encouraging nutrients such as vitamin A and C, iron, calcium, protein and fibre.
The guidelines apply to all new product licensing and promotional tie-in deals and to renewals of any existing deals in the US starting January 1, 2008.