qubo®, the TV and online entertainment service for children, announced that it has created nutritional guidelines that will dictate advertising decisions on the qubo Channel, as well as on the qubo broadcast programming blocks that air on NBC, ION Television and Telemundo. The effort highlights qubo’s mission of promoting pro-social values including literacy and healthy living. The announcement was made by Kerry Hughes, senior vice president, advertising sales and partnerships for qubo.qubo’s effort marks the latest step in ION Media Networks’ innovative advertising and media initiative to combat childhood obesity announced last summer. Both qubo and ION Life networks are undertaking a series of programs aimed at improving children’s health and reducing the rates of childhood obesity in the U.S. qubo is a member of the Ad Council’s Coalition on Healthy Children while Brandon Burgess, Chairman and CEO of ION Media Networks, which is qubo’s majority shareholder, is actively involved in the FCC’s Task Force on Media & Childhood Obesity.To create these nutritional guidelines, qubo enlisted the help of nationally renowned author and expert on childhood obesity, Goutham Rao, MD, clinical director of the Weight Management and Wellness Center at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC ( see bio on Dr. Rao below). The guidelines list acceptable nutritional intake limits for meals and snacks broken down by calories, grams of fat, as well as saturated and trans fat, sugar, protein, fiber and sodium.Concerned with the growing trend towards childhood obesity, qubo called for these guidelines to guide on-air and online advertising decisions and to ensure parents that qubo provides a safe environment for children with positive messages about healthy living.“By only accepting advertising from companies that meet this nutritional criteria, we believe that we have set the gold standard for the kids entertainment industry and are helping kids make healthy decisions about what they eat,” said Hughes.”We are committed to combating childhood obesity through all of our networks-analog, digital, on-line and soon, mobile,” said John Lawson, ION Media Networks executive vice president for policy and strategic initiatives. “We hope that qubo’s nutritional guidelines send a strong message to parents, policymakers and our business partners about our dedication to the wellness of America’s kids.”“Reversing the epidemic of childhood obesity will require a major, long-term commitment by parents, teachers, physicians and other health care professionals, political leaders and public policy experts,” said Dr. Rao. “qubo’s guidelines are a great first step in the right direction. Children are bombarded with ads for unhealthy foods. One of the easiest ways to reach the largest number of children and families is to make sure the foods and beverages advertised to children meet basic requirements for good nutrition. It was a privilege to work with qubo in creating these guidelines.”In addition to announcing its new nutritional guidelines, qubo also unveiled this month a series of Public Service Announcements (PSA’s) created in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), the Ad Council and the U.S. Olympic Committee designed to promote exercise and healthy eating to children. Featuring several U.S. Olympic hopefuls, as well as qubo’s popular animated characters from VeggieTales, Jane and the Dragon and 3-2-1 Penguins!, the TV spots began airing this month through donated time on the qubo Channel, ION Television and NBC and will be distributed to television stations nationwide by the Ad Council.About qubo:qubo® is a bilingual, multi-platform entertainment destination for children that focuses on literacy, values and healthy lifestyles while celebrating the unlimited possibilities of a child’s imagination. Formed in 2006 by an unprecedented alliance of leading distribution partners and content players in children’s television, including Scholastic, ION Media Networks, NBC Universal, Corus Entertainment and Classic Media, qubo offers dynamic content in multiple environments. Currently broadcast on NBC Saturday mornings, ION TV network Fridays afternoons and Telemundo weekend mornings (check local listings) qubo also includes a 24/7 qubo Channel and website, www.qubo.com.