Politicians call for supermarkets to put sweets on top shelf to tackle childhood obesity


SUPERMARKETS should put unhealthy snacks like sweets on the top shelf to tackle childhood obesity, politicians have demanded.

They said No10 should also consider creating tough new laws that could make ‘buy one get one free offers’ on junk food illegal.

 Politicians have demanded supermarkets put unhealthy snacks on the top shelf to tackle childhood obesity

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Politicians have demanded supermarkets put unhealthy snacks on the top shelf to tackle childhood obesityCredit: Getty Images – Getty

They also called for trolleys to be divided up into different compartments to encourage Brits to shop healthier.

And they said chains like Sainsbury’s and Tesco should lay shuttle buses to ferry people stuck in “food deserts” to their nearest supermarket.

The all party parliamentary group on healthy childhoods came up with the wacky proposals as they lashed supermarkets for “sacrificing healthy choices on the altar of profit”.

The cross-party group of MPs and peers urged the chains to start leading the battle against the bulge.

Labour MP and group chairman Steve McCabe said: “Supermarkets are often seen as the pantomime villain in a national battle against obesity and associated serious health conditions like Type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some cancers.

‘PESTER POWER’

“The charge list against supermarkets includes nudging shoppers into unhealthy purchases to get cash tills ringing, perpetuating an obesogenic environment at odds with Government healthy eating guidelines, and fuelling ‘pester power’ at the expense of cash-strapped families.

“We show that supermarkets can take a leading role in helping to solve the obesity epidemic.”

Supermarkets can lure Brits into buying fattening snacks by packing their shelves with unhealthy offers, sweets and treats, the report found.

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To battle this, junk food should be moved away from lower shelves so it does not catch the eye of kids, the report said.

While chains should also lay on tours for kids with nutrition experts to teach them how to eat better, the study said.

OBESITY EPIDEMIC

And they should install water fountains in their foyers to encourage healthier drinking.

A whopping one in five kids are obese by the time they hit 11 years-old, according to NHS data.

Christopher Snowdon, from the free-market think-tank the IEA, hit out at the proposals.

He said: “Politicians should familiarise themselves with the supermarket industry before they put forward their hare-brained ideas and needless interventions.

“The APPG seems to be under the illusion that healthy food is expensive and yet their report acknowledges an IEA study showing that it is in general cheaper than less healthy food.

“Fruit, vegetables, pasta, rice and bread are extraordinarily cheap.

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“Price discounts are applied to packaged and processed food because brands are competing with one another.

“There is no such competition with fruit and veg, which are always sold at the lowest price.”

Public Health England gives overview of obesity and weight management



 





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