Two older women at a market stall

Childhood obesity

New national partnership to drive healthier food and drink policies

10 March 2020
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3 min read

We’re launching a new three-year partnership with Sustain, the national alliance for better food and farming.

The partnership will propose healthy, sustainable alternatives to existing local and national policy. This includes campaigning to limit the advertisement of unhealthy snacks and regulating sales tactics that make unhealthy options more appealing to young people.

 

Moving from local to national scales

This partnership is one of the first to broaden our childhood obesity programme to include projects on a national scale. We know from our work in Lambeth and Southwark that to make lasting local change, you need to act at a national level.

Sustain, who leads the Children’s Food Campaign, was key to driving through the sugary drinks levy. We want to build on their strong track record in influencing structural change nationally.

We all want our children to grow up healthy. But our everyday environment makes it so difficult when we’re constantly nudged towards food and drink that is not as healthy or nutritious. We look forward to exploring new policies and business practices. Healthy choices need to be more affordable, accessible and appealing than unhealthy ones.

Barbara Crowther co-ordinator of the Children’s Food Campaign

Unhealthy food policies target children

We will work with policy-makers to share evidence around the sorts of changes that can impact children’s health. Our work will first focus on four key areas:

  • Policies to restrict sales of unhealthy food to children and increase access to healthier options
  • The use and placement of child-friendly characters on unhealthy options
  • Legislation to limit the marketing, advertisement and promotion of junk food on TV, online and instore
  • Supporting fiscal measures to make healthier products more affordable

Our priority is to change local food environments and systems to make healthy food the default. This involves targeting legislation and regulation as well as supporting projects that directly impact food consumption in our inner-city area.

We chose to partner with Sustain because of their strong network and ability to galvanise the sector. With our support, we hope that they can go even further, faster. We’ll work together to push through existing policy recommendations as well as developing the next wave of potential policies to begin campaigning for. I look forward to seeing all that we achieve in the next few years.

Jessica Attard Portfolio Manager for childhood obesity