Childhood Obesity: a plan for action (Chapter 2)
The government has published its plan of the actions it will take to tackle childhood obesity by 2030. It commits to halve childhood obesity and significantly reduce the gap in obesity between children from the most and least deprived areas. Part one of the childhood obesity plan was published in 2016.
Part two of the government’s Childhood Obesity Plan is more ambitious than its first. From part one, actions on sugar reduction have been successful in driving product reformulation – for example the Soft Drinks Industry Levy. Milk drinks may be added to the levy and there will be consultation on legislation to ban sales of energy drinks to children.
Action on calorie reduction continues. Industry is encouraged to reduce calories in popular children’s foods by 20% by 2024. With industry so far missing targets on reformulation progress, it threatens tougher action if it’s not met. A consultation on legislation to mandate consistent calorie labelling for the out-of-home sector (e.g. restaurants, cafes, takeaways) will take place in 2018.
There are robust measures curbing advertising and promotion of high fat salt sugar (HFSS) food and drink, including plans to legislate:
• banning adverts before 9pm and extending similar protections for the digital space
• banning location placement – for example, by check outs and at the end of aisles
• banning price promotion in retail and out-of-home settings – for example, buy one get one free and multi-buy offers.
Read our summary