NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 7 – Brookside Dairy has signed a rights agreement with the US-based animation company, Walt Disney, to use the Disney, Disney-Pixar and Marvel characters on Dairy fresh products targeting children.
During the launch of the dairy products, Brookside aims to encourage kids to consume healthy dairy products by adding cartoon characters that kids can identify with.
Oliver Mary, the Marketing Director of Brookside Dairy Limited says a study commissioned by the company and conducted by Kantar TNS showed that kids choose to eat attractive and colourful snacks that they can identify with.
“Unfortunately mothers purchase some of these snacks even though they are not all healthy for their kids,” says Mary.
“Dairy Fresh is currently the strongest brand in our portfolio that is associated with kids. Our new range therefore boasts of a recipe that is tailor made for kids and does not contain artificial sweeteners nor preservatives and is fully compliant with Disney’s nutritional guidelines,” adds Mary.
Some of the cartoon characters that Brookside has rights to use in its branding include; Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Sofia the first, Frozen, Spider-Man and Lightening Queen.
The use of foreign cartoon characters on products meant for children has been the source of heated debate over the last few days with Kenyans expressing their position on social media.
This is wrong. Brookside is using images glorifying whiteness to appeal to middle class Kenyan kids who watch Disney movies. They should be ashamed of manipulating kids with Western images. We've got animals of our oral tales. The ones the rich are poaching in national parks https://t.co/Db4lggcPPx
— Dr Wandia (@wmnjoya) December 4, 2017
I really don't see anything wrong with that. Kids love these cartoons. You should see the look on my nephew's face when he sees yogurt with Spiderman on it. No negotiation I must buy it
— Sarah Nanjala (@NanjalaSarah) December 4, 2017
Fixed it for the Wokers..This debate is over 👌👌👌👌👌 pic.twitter.com/tEy57nffu1
— Droid.psd (@droid254) December 4, 2017
But Brookside says the research findings by Kantar TNS gives insights on the key factors that determine cartoons preferences among kids including age, gender and popularity.
“These factors were used to inform the decision to launch the cartoon character themed products,” says Mary.
Disney’s partnership with Brookside is part of the animation company strategic policy since 2006 to use stories and characters to make healthy living simple and fun, says Luke Roberts, Director of Integrated Sales for The Walt Disney Company Africa.
“Since then, Disney has been looking at the different ways it can support families to live more healthily. This brand new range is one such example of our commitment in this area and we are thrilled to be working with Brookside Dairy Limited in bringing consumers nutritional and engaging food products.”