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Welsh Government launches consultation on plans to restrict promotions on junk foods

01 Jul 2024 3 minute read
The plans will see restrictions on volume price promotions of high fat, salt and sugar products

The Welsh Government has launched a consultation on proposed legislation to restrict promotions on junk food products that are high in fat, sugar and salt.

The plans will see restrictions on volume price promotions of products that can encourage “overconsumption”.

This includes multi-buy offers such as “buy one get one free” and free refills of sugar-sweetened beverages.

Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care, Eluned Morgan announced the consultation and a draft text of the proposed regulations on Monday (July 1).

The Welsh Government says the proposed first phase legislation will support Welsh people to make healthier choices when food shopping and eating out.

The plans will see restrictions on the placement of junk food products at key selling locations which can lead to “impulse purchases”.

This includes areas such as store entrances, checkouts and aisle ends.

Influence

Ms Morgan said: “Evidence shows that food products with poor nutritional value are currently disproportionately promoted more than healthier products.

“Unfortunately, these promotions are very effective in influencing what food and drink we buy.

“I am determined to support the industry to increase the pace and scale of action to produce and market healthier food and drink products.”

The draft regulations outline location and price promotion restrictions on less healthy products, as well as restrictions for sugary drinks.

The Welsh Government says that in order to ensure that enforcement is made as straightforward as possible, the proposed approach is aligned with equivalent legislation in England.

The Scottish Government has also set out its proposals to introduce similar measures.

Regulations are expected to be laid in the Senedd before the end of 2024.

Subject to Senedd approval, the new legislation will come into force in 2025 following a 12-month implementation window for impacted businesses and enforcement bodies.

Balanced

Ms Morgan said: “This legislation represents a significant step towards our ambition for a healthier food environment.

“It will encourage the food industry to take steps to provide a more balanced food offer for people and communities in Wales.

“Officials will work closely with stakeholders to ensure that clear and comprehensive guidance for the food industry is in place at the time any legislation is laid.”

Following the Welsh Government’s consultation in 2022 about a proposal to restrict the sale of energy drinks to under 16s, the Cabinet Secretary will also undertake a call for evidence in relation to the consumption of energy drinks by children.

She said: “I will set out my proposals to take forward other proposed measures included in our Healthy Food Environment consultation in 2022 shortly, together with a broader range of approaches to support the sector to produce and promote affordable healthy food options for everyone.”

The consultation is available here.


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Welsh Patriot
Welsh Patriot
16 days ago

The desert shops on every high street, that just sell high sugar, high calorie stuff seem to be exempt from any legislation it seems!
Instead lets tax builders and people doing heavy manual tasks who want a can of regular coke with their sandwiches.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
16 days ago

Hospitals…what hospitals, says Baroness Bumble…

Alun
Alun
16 days ago

Whilst we are hitting fast food outlets, how about making them employ someone to pick up rubbish their customers dump in the surrounding areas?

David C
David C
16 days ago

I can see it now, months of RT trotting on about “a blanket ban on burgers”.

Padi Phillips
Padi Phillips
16 days ago

I fully support any measure to restrict the consumption of this kind of food by children (up to and including a ban on sale to children), but when it comes to adults I think perhaps education is best, along with legislation that forces these food outlets to offer healthier alternatives. Nutrition information needs to be displayed prominently on packaging, especially fat and sugar content, as well as any additives used. No adult should be in a position where they are told what the can or cannot eat. As an adult I have the power of informed consent, and am well… Read more »

Howie
Howie
16 days ago

If you are going to ban things based on health benefits for all of the population then there are more pressing items to start with, alcohol and tobacco or is it the tax take off these products more important to Govts.

CapM
CapM
16 days ago

Have just had a quick look at the Consultation document and looks a bit of a dog’s breakfast.

Lots of exemptions aka loopholes and what looks like arbitrary categories for outlets.
It’s not clear if there are complementary proposals enabling healthy and affordable food to more available for consumers especially those on a tight budget.
And where’s the detail on the education and information programme that must accompany the legislation.

It would be informative to know if what’s proposed has been introduced elsewhere, how and with what the outcomes.

Ruth
Ruth
16 days ago

More importantly, they should ban the advertisement of gambling. In recent years we are constantly bombarded with invitations to waste our money gambling – made to look like fun entertainment – on bingo sites, game apps, betting sites, and it’s advertised on every TV player and station, every media outlet, and all big business websites. The government has been under the thumb of the gambling lobby for years. If they were not tempting people to waste money and time on pointless things, then maybe they would have more money to spend on decent food, and more time to spend on… Read more »

Alun Owen
Alun Owen
16 days ago

Another burden on under funded councils and time, just like the flawed recycle waste legislation which has to be enforced by Natural resources Wales, and in a country where the biggest growth has been the explosion of food banks, Ultra processed foods exist and sell for very good reasons – lack of understanding of todays people on how to prepare food, the cheapness of processed food which means for many. at least the daily recommended calorific intake is reached and the lack of plentiful local food supply chains which is linked to the growth of the big supermarket chains, would… Read more »

Welsh Patriot
Welsh Patriot
16 days ago

Great ban shop selling meals deal than included a can of regular Coke, but allow the Assembly Canteen to still sell subsidised high fat “Full Welsh Breakfasts” for £4.40

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