Girl eating strawberry.

The survey will gather information about the nutrient intake of children.

Kids Eat, Kids Play survey

CSIRO's Preventative Health Flagship was partnered with the University of South Australia to undertake one of the most important surveys of children ever to be undertaken in Australia.

  • 21 April 2010 | Updated 14 October 2011

Project summary

The Kids Eat, Kids Play survey, collected benchmarking data about the dietary intake and activity patterns of Australian children, and was the first national survey of Australian children's nutrient intake since 1995 and the first national physical activity survey since 1985.

The survey, undertaken for the Australian Government's Department of Health and Ageing, involved more than 4000 children aged between two to 16 years from both metropolitan and regional Australia.

The survey was jointly funded by the:

  • Department of Health and Ageing
  • Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 
  • Australian Food and Grocery Council.
    Participants will be interviewed about their food intake, activity patterns, and physical measurements.

Project activities

Four thousand participants were recruited throughout the first half of 2007, and the interviews continued until August 2007.

Children were randomly selected from metropolitan and regional areas of Australia.

The selected families were telephoned and invited to take part in the survey.

Children from all states were included and the actual number was proportional to the population of children in that state.

The survey involved 230 locations across Australia.

Participants were interviewed about their:

  • food intake
  • activity patterns
  • physical measurements.

Additional information about the number of steps taken daily was collected using a pedometer for seven days for children aged over five years old and some general questions about the household was asked.


The project director was Professor Timothy Olds from the School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia.

The University contributed to the physical activity survey, including measuring physical activity patterns and weight status.

Nutrition survey activities are managed for the Preventative Health Flagship by Professor Lynne Cobiac, Head of the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics at Flinders University of South Australia, Adelaide.

The nutrition element of the survey gathered detailed information about the food, beverage and dietary supplement intake of children aged two to 16 years.

An independent national social research fieldwork company, I-View, worked with the University of South Australia, Adelaide, and CSIRO conducted the survey.


The Department of Health and Ageing has published results on their National Monitoring in Publica Health and Nutrition [external link] webpage.