Disney, Birds Eye To Push Kids' Veggie Consumption

The Walt Disney Co. and Birds Eye will team on an initiative to get kids to eat and like their veggies.

Aligning with Disney’s Magic of Healthy Living push, Birds Eye’s “Step Up To The Plate” program will integrate the Pinnacle Foods’ brand into the media company’s “Magic of Healthy Living TRYathlon Road Tour," slated for August and September.

As part of a Disney Consumer Products component, Disney characters are expected to appear on some Birds Eye packaging. Disney Channel and Disney XD stars will also be engaged in cross-platform sweepstakes.

Spending levels behind the program were not disclosed. Disney succeeds Nickelodeon, as Birds Eye previously worked with the Viacom network’s iCarly, tying its Play with Your Veggies promotion to Nick’s Worldwide Day of Play.

Although recent reports indicate that the obesity rate among kids 2 to 5 is declining, the number of elementary-school-age children who are overweight or obese remains the same at 17%. Moreover, only 10% of U.S. children are eating the proper amount of vegetables, as detailed in the USDA's MyPlate guidelines.

"Moms know veggies are healthy and that her family needs to eat more of them,” said Mark Schiller, executive vice president and division president, Birds Eye Frozen Division, said in a statement. “Our job is to help make it easy for her to do just that. Having Disney Step Up To The Plate with us furthers our ability to inspire children to like veggies for life."

Noted Rita Ferro, Disney's executive vice president, media sales and marketing: "Disney has a time-honored commitment to entertaining kids and families and that commitment extends to supporting parents in raising healthy, happy kids. This new initiative with Birds Eye proves that doing the right thing for kids is also a smart strategy for our business."