News

Diet and Healthy Weight plan

Published: 02 Jul 2018 10:00

Action to address marketing and support families.

Restrictions on promoting unhealthy food, support for pregnant women, and nutrition training for services working with families are among actions to improve healthy weight in Scotland.

The Scottish Government’s Diet and Healthy Weight Delivery Plan contains a number of measures to restrict the promotion and advertising of foods high in fat, sugar and salt.

Actions to tackle childhood obesity will start pre-pregnancy and continue throughout school years and into adolescence. This includes more support to children, young people and families to achieve a healthy weight, and training for frontline staff in services that work with them.

The plan sets out five outcomes, each supported by a range of actions:

  • Children have the best start in life – they eat well and have a healthy weight
  • The food environment supports healthier choices
  • People have access to effective weight management
  • Leaders across all sectors promote healthy diet and weight
  • Diet-related health inequalities are reduced

Public Health Minister Joe Fitzpatrick said:

“Far too many people in Scotland face serious risks to their health linked to poor diet and unhealthy weight. This is unacceptable and it’s largely avoidable. Scotland has a proud history of taking decisive action on public health and this is the next step in that journey, turning our attention to the nation’s diet and weight.

“Giving children the best possible start in life is one of this Government’s key priorities. We’ve pledged to halve childhood obesity by 2030 and that ambition is at the heart of our delivery plan. I am proud to publish it at the start of National Childhood Obesity Week.

“But this is not just about children; two-thirds of adults in Scotland are overweight, and I want everyone, across all sectors including government, citizens, the public and third sectors and businesses to play their part in achieving our bold vision to significantly reduce health inequalities.

“A key part of that will be the world-leading measures we’ve set out to transform the food environment to support healthier choices.”

Background

The plan has been published following extensive consultation. 

To ensure that the steps taken are proportionate and deliver beneficial outcomes, the Scottish Government will consult this autumn on detailed plans to restrict the promotion and marketing of junk food within premises where these foods are sold to the public.  In particular: confectionery, sweet biscuits, crisps, savoury snacks, cakes, pastries, puddings, and sugary soft drinks.  Views will also be sought on whether to also include ice-creams and dairy desserts. Restrictions would apply to, among other things, multi-buys; displays at checkouts; front of store, etc.; purchase rewards; unlimited refills; upselling and promotion of value.