The “Very Hungry Caterpillar” is the new face of the “Eating Healthy. Growing Strong.” campaign, a movement designed to combat childhood obesity. AOL Health reports (along with everybody from the Los Angeles Times to TIME’s Healthland blog) that the legendary children’s book written by Eric Carle in 1969 will be sent for free to more than 17,500 pediatricians’ offices around the country starting on the first day of Spring- March 20. The book will be packaged with growth charts and a reading guide designed to help parents use the story to talk to their young children about healthy eating.
In her post on Healthland, Time’s Bonnie Rochman points out that although beloved, our hungriest caterpillar isn’t actually satiated by his greener, healthier choices, and so he goes on a wild binge of sinful selections like cake and ice cream and heaven forbid — salami!
To me, this speaks less of the caterpillar’s hypocrisy and more about the recurring trend in marketers capitalizing on “nostalgia.” Better-for-you brands and non-better-for-you brands alike are starting to take their mother’s advice seriously — and campaigns are being built around this tried and true knowledge.