Theresa May 'set to U-turn over junk food ad ban'
The Prime Minister is reportedly set to U-turn on her previous decision to rule out restrictions on fast food advertising.
The Government is said to be planning a crackdown on junk food advertising and two-for-one promotions after Public Health England research revealed that one in three children leaving school are classed as overweight or obese.
The move is being viewed as a U-turn on Mrs May’s initial decision not to push restrictive regulation onto food producers, instead opting to set voluntary targets, many of which have largely been missed.
Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt is rumoured to be behind the new push, having found sympathetic colleagues in the No.10 policy unit.
The new regulations could be brought in as soon as this summer.
It comes as Public Health England calls on food producers to cut calories by 20% by 2024. They estimate that the move would save the NHS £4.5bn over 25 years, and would prevent 35,000 deaths.
Dr Alison Tedstone, chief nutritionist at PHE said: “We have more obese children in England than ever before – we have one in five children arriving in primary school already obese or overweight and one in three leaving primary school obese or overweight”.
“PHE will advise government if progress isn’t being made”, she warned.
However, Christopher Snowdon of the Institute of Economic Affairs branded the calorie reduction plans “absurd and unworkable”.
He added: “The nanny zealots at Public Health England have lost the plot.
“The 74% of us who are not obese do not want our food degraded. Public Health England is taking one-size-fits-all health policy to new depths.
“Even a half-mad Soviet commissar, drunk on power and vodka, would not issue an edict like this. Public Health England should be shut down before it can do any more damage.”
BANT (British Association for Applied Nutrition and Nutritional Therapy) have posted a response to this article saying that they are 'delighted by the news that the Government is planning a U-turn in policy relating to banning junk food advertising and two for one promotions'. You can read their full response, here: