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Steve Hansen, NZ All Black Rugby coach pushes “food” that contributes to obesity epidemic.


I was watching TV last night, and one of those wonderful adverts with Steven Hansen, possibly the best All Black coach ever came on. Hmm. Would the All Blacks really eat such non-food?

The New Zealand All Blacks are the most consistently successful sports team in history over the past 100+ years. Why with all the influence the All Blacks have, are they and the coach pushing us to eat the very foods that are contributing to the obesity and ill-health epidemic?

Then there was another one:

Lets take a look at what Mr Hansen is encouraging us to eat:

Arnotts Shapes and Arnotts TimTams.

The boys are munching on Shapes and their female partners on Tim Tams. Except that Victor gobbles all the TimTams.

Those Arnotts marketing dudes are clever are they not? A few years back I wrote how they got us to buy their biscuits in order to support Breast Cancer.

Arnotts were elated at the success of this strategy “Its ‘Show Your Love For Women Living With Breast Cancer’ campaign for Tim Tam also achieved major success, raising more than $60,000 for the Breast Cancer Aotearoa Coalition and driving breakthrough sales for the Tim Tam brand.”

Arnotts are health washing their hyper-palatable ultra-processed food by buying associations with the best sports team in the world and its coach.

It kind of reminds me of cigarette advertising and how big tobacco achieved a clean healthy image by being associated with doctors.


Has  Steven Hansen not been aware that the primary culprit in the increase in obesity and health related issues is the rise and rise of ultra-processed food?

Lets take a closer look at Tim Tam ingredients:

Sugar, Wheat Flour, Vegetable Oil (Soy), Milk Solids, Cocoa Butter, Cocoa Mass, Golden Syrup, Food Colours (Caramel III1, Beet Red, Cochineal, Annatto), Cocoa Powder, Emulsifiers (Soy Lecithin, E476), Salt, Baking Powder, Flavour

And Shapes ingredients:

Arnotts don’t want us to eat just one Tim Tam, their adverts prior to this encouraged multiple Tim Tam consumption

Anything nutritious in Tim Tams? NO

Oh and a packet of TimTams that Victor gobbled? 4367kJ (1043 calories, 22 teaspoons of sugar)

One simple thing the All Blacks and their coach can do is use their enormous influence to encourage our young to eat real food from the land with little or no human interference.
As a post-grad educated nutritionist, I’m dismayed at what Steve Hansen and team are advertising.
They can do better, they should do better. It is not good enough to have the top team in NZ pushing crap down our throats for money.


  1. Holding their feet to the fire. Very thorough post Julianne. It’s so disappointing to see the health professionals acting mute when they need to be speaking up as you have.

    • I think part of the problem is that ultra-processed food and drink is marketed so ubiquitously by Sports teams we hardly notice. To be honest since doing the research for “Why Are We Fat?” documantary – my eyes have been opened to the nature of ultra-processed food marketing

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