The shift in framing of food and beverage product reformulation in the United States from 1980 to 2015

Food and beverage product reformulation is a public health nutrition policy of recent prominence; it is a so-called ‘win-win’ policy, as unlike other nutrition policies, it has the potential to also benefit the food and beverage industry. This study investigates how and why reformulation became a public health initiative by conducting a framing analysis on 278 US newspaper articles from 1980 to 2015. Three primary frames of reformulation were identified: business, health, and political. The political frame of reformulation grew in importance after 2001, to describe reformulations occurring in response to public health policy initiatives aimed at obesity and noncommunicable diseases. The increasing use of a political frame suggests that voluntary reformulation followed a growing threat of policy change and litigation facing the industry, a finding that provides important context to debates about voluntary reformulation initiatives.

Scott C, Nixon L. The shift in framing of food and beverage product reformulation in the United States from 1980 to 2015. Critical Public Health. 2017 Jun 7:1-3.