Media Centre

Press releases

Expert Interview Opportunity: Toddlers and fussy eating

Dr Emma Haycraft, Senior Lecturer in Psychology, is available for interviews today following the report by University College London that states fussy-eating in toddlers is 'not the fault of parents'.

Read the original story here.

Emma is an expert in Child Feeding, Infant Feeding, Childhood Obesity, Children’s Eating, Children and Sedentary Behaviour, Children and Exercise, Parenting and Young Mothers. To view her profile, click here.

Emma has previously offered tips on how to get children to overcome fussy eating, food variation and portion sizes. 

On today's report, Emma commented: "This research from UCL helps caregivers to understand why some children might be fussier eaters than others, as it shows that genetics can play a role.  

"What we know, which applies to all children, is that we're all born with a preference for sweet tastes, like breast milk, but have to learn to like other flavours, like vegetables which can be bitter.  

"This can take time and we know that caregivers need to repeatedly offer an array of foods to their children.  

"Children will often make judgements about a food based on its look or smell, without even tasting it and it can take 10-15 offerings before a child learns to trust and like a food.  

"It's important that caregivers don't give up and continue to gently offer disliked foods to their child, without any force for them to be eaten."

Notes for editors

Press release reference number:

Loughborough University is equipped with a live in-house broadcast unit via the Globelynx network. To arrange an interview with one of our experts please contact the press office on 01509 223491. Bookings can be made online via

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, putting it among the best universities in the world, and was named the best in the country for its student experience in the 2016 THE Student Experience Survey. Loughborough was ranked 4th in the Guardian University League Table 2017 and 7th in The UK Complete University Guide 2017 and was also named Sports University of the Year by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017, and University of the Year in the What Uni Student Choice Awards 2015.

Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’ and is in the top 10 in England for research intensity. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

In September 2015 the University opened an additional academic campus in London’s new innovation quarter. Loughborough University London, based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities.

Related expert

Dr Emma Haycraft



Dane Vincent

Video Journalist

Telephone: 01509222443

PR team

Telephone: 01509 222224

Media training resources for Loughborough University staff