Moms should consult kids on veggies

June 11, 2008|By Chris Rosenbloom | Chris Rosenbloom,Cox News Service

Ever hear this one? Kids just won't eat vegetables. According to a survey released by Produce for Kids (produceforkids.org), maybe parents should ask their kids what fruit and veggies to toss into the grocery cart before making decisions about what to purchase.

A survey conducted with about 1,500 moms and children - either online or in the grocery store - revealed that kids voted broccoli as one of their three most-favorite vegetables, yet moms did not rank it in their top five most-purchased.

Parents buy (in order of top-purchased vegetables per week) potatoes, baby carrots, tomatoes, lettuce/salads and corn. Spinach ranked last. When kids were asked their favorites, they ranked carrots, broccoli, corn, green peas and peas in their top five.

When it comes to fruit, moms and kids alike say bananas, apples, grapes, strawberries and easy-to-peel citrus fruits (such as oranges and clementine tangerines) top both of their lists.

The survey also showed that dips are hip - 70 percent of kids like using salad dressings as dips for fruit and vegetables. One surprising finding is that cartoon characters might be lucrative tie-ins for fast food or processed foods like cereals or macaroni and cheese, but when it comes to fruit and vegetables, parents said they were less likely to buy produce if cartoon characters adorned the packaging.

Dave Grotto, registered dietitian and nutrition adviser for Produce for Kids and PBS Kids Advisory Board chairman, said, "As parents, I believe we have a great opportunity to inspire our children to eat more fruits and vegetables. Seeing that kids actually like broccoli, bananas and other great-tasting produce items, we should give them a chance to try new things."

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