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Government’s childhood obesity plan is condemned

By Megan Rose

Medical experts and campaigners have today labelled the Government’s strategies to tackle childhood obesity as ‘weak’ and ‘embarrassing.’

The plans are based on George Osborne’s sugar tax announcement, but fail to act on recommendations from Public Health England.

They advised that a ban should be placed on price-cutting promotions of junk food in supermarkets, and a restriction be placed on junk food companies’ advertising and marketing campaigns during family-friendly TV programmes. The plans fail to impose or mention either of these strategies.

With one in three primary school children currently identified as obese, the government's plans have been heavily criticised by health experts and professionals, as well as healthy eating champion and chef, Jamie Oliver.

Professor Graham MacGregor, chairman of Action on Sugar and Consensus Action on Salt and Health, said the plans were ‘an insulting response to the UK crisis in type-2 diabetes, both in children and adults,’ which will ‘bankrupt the NHS unless something radical is done.’

Meanwhile, Sir Harpal Kumar, CEO of Cancer Research UK, said, ‘we need stronger action to protect children from junk food advertising if we want to make a difference. So for the government to ignore these aspects is inexcusable.’

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Image: Public Domain