SOUTH Fremantle Football Club has been labelled the worst in the WAFL for unhealthy sponsorship, according to a new study.
The Curtin University-based Public Health Advocacy Institute of Western Australia (PHAIWA) review looked at 309 WAFL sponsors and sorted them into either red, amber or green categories.
Red sponsors were those promoting alcohol, gambling or food high in saturated fat, sugar or salt; amber was for sponsors promoting food with moderate fat, sugar or salt and green was sponsors that promoted a healthy lifestyle via good food or exercise.
PHAIWA director Melissa Stoneham said South Fremantle had the most red sponsors with seven, followed by Subiaco with 6.
East Fremantle had three red sponsors.
“Although the WAFL is largely played by over 18s, many young people and children go to the games or watch them on television and are therefore exposed to these unhealthy brands,” Dr Stoneham said.
“Research shows that sport sponsorships offer companies an avenue to expose children and young people to their brand in a bid to encourage a connection with their brand.
“Given many children and young people think that the food and drink companies that sponsor their favourite team are ‘cool’, it is so important that we see more healthy options on offer to ensure the next generation grows up consuming nutritious food.”
South Fremantle Football Club chief executive Tom Bottrell said the sponsors referred to in the study were all WAFL competition sponsors.
“We are obligated, and comfortable, under our licence to support those partners with appropriate signage,” he said.
Curtin University’s ranking of WAFL clubs based on sponsorship
South Fremantle (7 red, 1 amber, 2 green, 50 other)
Subiaco (6 red, 0 amber, 1 green, 18 other)
Perth (4 red, 0 amber, 2 green, 53 other)
Swan Districts (4 red, 0 amber, 0 green, 24 other)
East Fremantle (3 red, 0 amber, 0 green, 51 other)
Claremont (2 red, 0 amber, 1 green, 21 other)
Peel (2 red, 1 amber, 0 green, 49 other)
West Perth (2 red, 0 amber, 0 green, 23 other)
East Perth (0 red, 0 amber, 0 green, 20 other)