Truss may scrap HFSS restrictions

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Prime minister Liz Truss may scrap the entire anti-obesity strategy after ministers ordered an official review of measures designed to deter people from eating junk food, stated a report on Tuesday (13). 

The Guardian cited a Whitehall source to state that the review was “deregulatory in focus” and is expected to lead to the new government jettisoning a raft of anti-obesity policies inherited from Boris Johnson, Truss’s predecessor in Downing Street. 

The report adds that the review could enable Truss to lift the ban on sugary products being displayed at checkouts as well as enable “buy one get one free” multi-buy deals in shops. The restrictions on advertising certain products on TV before the 9pm watershed could also be ditched. 

Whitehall sources also hinted that the Department of Health and Social Care’s “internal summary” will also look at possibly letting got the calorie counts on menu which are designed to encourage people to choose healthier dishes and only became mandatory in April. Questions are also raised on the future of sugar tax, which began in 2018 and has helped make soft drinks much less unhealthy, should go too. 

The Obesity Health Alliance director, Katharine Jenner, is “deeply concerned”. 

“It would be reckless to waste government and business time and money rowing back on these obesity policies, which are evidence-based and already in law. These policies are popular with the public, who want it to be easier to make healthier choices,” reports quoted Jenner as saying. 

Last month, Truss told Daily Mail that those taxes are “over”.  

“Talking about whether or not somebody should buy a two-for-one offer? No. There is definitely enough of that.

“What people want the government to be doing is delivering good roads, good rail services, making sure there’s broadband, making sure there’s mobile phone coverage, cutting the NHS waiting lists, helping people get a GP appointment. They don’t want the government telling them what to eat,” Truss said.