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Scottish Government Could Implement Restrictions on Junk Food to Promote Healthy Eating

The Scottish Government has launched a consolation on a proposal to limit the promotion of foods that are high in fat, sugar or salt.

The consultation will be seeking the views of the public on restricting the promotion of confectionary, cakes, crisps, sugary soft drinks and savoury snacks at checkouts and in front of stores, as well as removing multi buy discounts.

Speaking on the Consultation the Minister for Public Health Maree Todd said “Our diets remain too high in calories, fat, sugar and salt which can have serious consequences for our overall health.

“In Scotland, two out of three adults are overweight or obese, with those living in our poorest areas more likely to be overweight and experience the most harm as a result.”

Mrs Todd went on to say, “By restricting the promotion of less healthy food and drink we can better support people to make healthier choices and help create a Scotland where everyone eats well and has a healthy weight.”

The aim of the proposal is to reduce the health risks that are associated with a poor diet and higher weight.

The proposal has received backing from Food Standards Scotland (FSS) with their Head of Nutrition Science and Policy Dr Gillian Purdon saying: “FSS supports the introduction of promotional restrictions on these products as part of a suite of recommendations to address the nation’s poor diet. Promotions can encourage us to buy more than we need, and don’t necessarily save us money.

“Evidence shows that a considerable amount of the food and drink we buy is on promotion and is often skewed towards less healthy choices such as confectionery, sweet biscuits, savoury snacks, cakes, pastries, puddings and sugar containing soft drinks. These foods account for around 20% of calories and fat in our diet, and more than half of our free sugar intake.

“Restricting promotions of these types of foods is one way to support people to make healthier choices.”

The consultation will help the Scottish Government assess the impact that the proposed restrictions would have on public health and business, as well as health inequalities.

The consultation will run until the 23rd of September and is linked below. https://www.gov.scot/publications/consultation-restricting-promotions-food-drink-high-fat-sugar-salt/

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