Anyone with an account on FaceBook, Instagram and the like has been assailed by food porn – what seems like never-ending images of elegantly plated bacon-wrapped shrimp or a sky-high stack of pancakes drizzled with whipped cream and caramel.
Like its more salacious cousin, you know it when you see it. Food porn is found in social media and traditional media alike, often with glossy, provocative images of high-calorie dishes so decadent that one might proclaim them better than sex. Some photographers take food porn a step further, eroticizing the food or borrowing from the pornographic aesthetic.
I just discovered, however, that there’s such a thing as the Food Porn Index, and it’s a good reminder that just about anything can be marketed with some creativity – even your healthy veggies. The Food Porn Index is a marketing campaign by juice and carrot company Bolthouse Farms to change the conversation and help people make better food choices. The index collects the hashtags being used online and tracks what foodies and regular people alike are sharing. The campaign encourages people to post, tweet and share more about healthy foods – specifically fruits and vegetables – and shift the focus away from the unhealthy food porn that dominates most food-related images and hashtags.
At the time this blog post was written, the index was skewing 70.8% toward unhealthy foods, with nearly 7 million #bacon hashtags alone. What’s interesting is that they have a built-in method of assessing the effectiveness of the marketing campaign – the index itself. Check out the interactive website, and don’t forget to tweet your vegetables