Pepsi and Walmart: Helping your kids want more junk food


C'mon parents, say it with me: "No." "No you may not." And again, with finality this time, but as calmly as you can: "NO!" Deep breath. "No you may not have toys, junk food and soda."

If you're a Walmart shopper, you'll have to do extra reps of the "no" practice now, as the mega-retailer has made an unusual move in its stores. According to one shopper who wrote into Consumerist (with photos), the Pepsi and Dorito display had been put right in the middle of the toy aisle. (As Consumerist's Meg Marco wrote, "Not at the end of the toy aisle. In the middle of it.") The reader's wife asked the store manager, what the heck? and "was told that this was an order directly from a central office."

We called Walmart's media relations to see if this was, indeed, a nationwide directive. After several hours we received an email indicating that the display is part of what's called the "Family Night Center" -- "which gives shoppers added convenience and savings for family game and movie night activities all in one place -- as evidence by all of those elements combined," a spokesperson wrote us. It's not usually in the toy aisle, but "some stores may have it facing inside the toy department due to layout and space limitations."