“Whilst there is no magic bullet to solving the obesity epidemic, there is a clear consensus on what the priorities should be. A sugary drinks tax, reducing sugar, fat and salt from food and drink and protecting children from exposure to incessant junk food advertising , are consistently cited by obesity experts, campaigners and researchers as measures that will really make a difference.
“And the Government has listened; in part. With the soft drinks industry levy set for 2018 and plans for sugar reduction in the pipeline, we’re moving in the right direction. However it is hugely disappointing that restrictions on the advertising and marketing of junk food to children failed to feature in the Government’s final Obesity Plan.
“The food and drink industry wouldn’t spend billions of pounds each year on advertising and marketing if it didn’t work. We know that the pester power of younger children and the spending power of teenagers is influenced by what they see on TV, the internet and on their phone. Failing to tackle junk food advertising is a failure to acknowledge the very real effect the environment has on our children’s habits and ultimately obesity rates.”