Food should be regulated like tobacco, campaigners say

May 19, 2014

Unhealthy foods are as big a global health risk as cigarettes, obesity groups warn

Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Governments around the world should impose regulations on food similar to those placed on tobacco to avoid obesity-related health problems in the future, campaigners say.

Consumers International (CI) and the World Obesity Federation (WOF) say that the potential threats posed by unhealthy foods could turn out to be more serious than those from cigarettes. The two groups called on governments around the world to introduce legislation to help consumers make healthy decisions about what they eat.

Unhealthy diets now rank above tobacco as a global cause of preventable non-communicable diseases, WOF said in a press release.

The two groups said that said worldwide deaths related to obesity and being overweight rose from 2.6 million in 2005 to 3.4 million in 2010.

CI's director general, Amanda Long, said that regulations should be imposed to avert problems similar to those caused by tobacco. "The scale of the impact of unhealthy food on consumer health is comparable to the impact of cigarettes," she added.

The two groups say that the best way to tackle the problem is through worldwide "collective action". The new rules the groups advocate include measures to reduce people's salt, saturated fat and sugar intakes, offering better food in hospitals and schools, the introduction of stricter advertising controls, and initiating better education campaigns to help individuals make healthy choices, the BBC reports.

Luke Upchurch at CI said: "If we don't take action now we are going to have the same intransigence and foot-dragging in the food industry... as the tobacco industry in the 1960s."

But Terry Jones, director of communications at the Food and Drink Federation, told the BBC that the food and drinks industry in the UK was already taking action to combat obesity.

He said: "The industry's participation in the UK government's public health responsibility deal sees manufacturers working in partnership with government, health organisations, NGOs and other stakeholders."

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So, some more control freaks are creating a new industry to join the banster gravy train.

Clear labelling & demonstrable quality - Yes please.
Being told what, where & when to eat - No thank you!

I see that in the CI's 2012 accounts, they made a total grant to its African subsidiary of £88,519.00, yet "chose not to disclose details of its transactions with its subsidiary undertaking, African Consumers International." . . . . . Why? Just curious.

The WOF website is pretty horrible & I couldn't find any financial info, but I suspect the money comes via a circuitous route from taxpayers.

Why are outfits like this taken seriously by the MSM?

Here's an alternative offered for free:

"Eat less, move around more. Eventually, you will die. Or, if you wish, stuff yourselves & die (maybe a bit sooner). Your choice".

...more nannying from some minor busy-body. Obvious solution, as Devonshire Dozer has already stated - eat less - exercise more. Mars Bars, eaten in quantity and with no accompanying exercise, are obviously "bad for you" - but I would be in trouble without a couple of Mars Bars on a long cycle ride.

Ignore these prats, enjoy life and eschew Political Correctness and busy-bodies.

We need to at least consider exterminating 6/7ths of the people on the earth, for their own good.

I am fully in support of stricter advertising in the US. It's awful. Lies and misconceptions are almost commonplace, a far cry from the more accurate advertising to be found in most other first world countries.

DevDoz - +1. It could not be clearer.
You do have a way with words. With your permission I shall use that little epigram in future.

Then lets start with the food fascists in the WOF and CI.

As DevDoz rightly points out the answer is simple, and combined with a reintroduction of home economics, ( for both sexes) so people learn to cook and see how cheap it is to eat a proper meal rather than junk food every night "cos the kids will only eat chips like!" we could turn things around in a few years.

Does anyone else have any doubt that the government's goal is to regulate every aspect of our lives? The only upside is htat eventually, we won't have to think for ourselves. 1984 indeed.

I have an idea! How about these people that want the GOVERNMENT to control EVERYTHING move to someplace where everything IS controlled.... you know, like NORTH KOREA! That would be AWESOME! The Nanniers can get told what to do, wear, eat, and where to go.... and the rest of us can make our own discussions!