Contest a Great Way to Celebrate Food Day, Says CSPI

To help celebrate Food Day, the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest is inviting people to submit creative videos of people pouring out soda on or about October 24. The contest aims to inspire conversation about soda, soda marketing, and the impact of sugary drinks on the obesity epidemic. Submissions will be accepted through Wednesday, November 7 with the winning entry receiving a $1,000 cash prize.

Entries will be judged on their creativity, originality, and the effectiveness of their message, subject to the official contest rules. The contest comes on the heels of the viral success of The Real Bears, the controversial video in which soda-guzzling, disease-ridden polar bears decide to pour out their sodas into the Arctic Ocean. The film, which features an original song by Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Jason Mraz and rapper MC Flow, has been viewed about 1.4 million times since its world premiere on October 10.

"Food Day is about inspiring people to change diets for the better and by advocating for better food policies," said CSPI executive director Michael F. Jacobson. "Making a "Pour One Out" video is the perfect way for a budding filmmaker—or anyone with a smartphone, frankly—to join the movement for healthy, affordable, and sustainable food."

Soda and other sugary drinks are the single-largest source of calories in the American diet and contribute to weight gain, obesity, diabetes, tooth decay, heart disease, and other health problems. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans discourages the consumption of sugary drinks, and health officials are increasingly focusing on reducing their consumption population-wide. New York City officials recently passed a regulation requiring food outlets regulated by the city's health department to cap soda serving sizes at 16 ounces. On Election Day, voters in Richmond, Calif., and El Monte, Calif., will decide whether those cities implement penny-per-ounce taxes on soda and sugary drinks.

Alex Bogusky, the advertising guru who led The Real Bears creative team, will help select the winner of the Pour One Out contest. Bogusky is credited with the success of the anti-tobacco Truth advertising campaign. The second-prize winner will be awarded $500, the third-place winner $250, and 10 honorable mentions will receive a commemorative T-shirt.

In its second year, Food Day will be observed in more than 2,000 events all around the country, including festivals in Baltimore, New York City, and Savannah, GA, and a conference on The Future of Food: 2050 in the United States Capitol Visitor Center.