Crisps and fizzy drinks could be banned from meal deals in junk food crack down

Proposals include restricting multi-buys, unlimited refills or selling at locations such as at checkouts and front of store.

Crisps and fizzy drinks could be banned from meal deals in plans being considered by the Scottish Government to crack down on junk food.

The proposals include banning meal deals and multi-buy offers on unhealthy foods including buy one get one free and unlimited refills.

Restrictions on selling locations within a store, such as placing sugary drinks or fatty foods near tills where shoppers are likely to impulse buy, are also being considered.

The plans are billed as “rebalancing meal deals towards healthier options” and reducing purchases of foods high in fat, sugar or salt (HFSS).

“If one or more components of a meal deal are an HFSS targeted food then the products could not be sold as a meal deal,” the proposals read.

If implemented, the restrictions on unhealthy foods would be stronger than those in England where meal deals are excluded from the regulations on multi-buys.

Research found that multi-buy promotions encouraged “increased consumption”.

A 12-week consultation has been launched to give members of the public a chance to have their say on the plans.

Public health minister Jenni Minto said: “Improving health and supporting people to eat well and have a healthy weight is a public health priority. We need to address the high levels of excess weight, obesity and poor diet we know are contributing to worsening trends in Scotland’s health.

“The association between these issues and health outcomes such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and certain cancers has been established for some time.

“We want to ensure Scotland is a place where we eat well and have a healthy weight.

“The Scottish Government is committed to restricting promotions of foods high in fat, sugar or salt at the point of purchase as research shows this is when people make decisions about what and how much to buy, for themselves and their families.

“This consultation, together with our Diet and Healthy Weight Delivery Plan, demonstrates the ambitious and wide-ranging action we believe is needed to address this challenge, and support improvements in diet and health and wellbeing in Scotland.

“The consultation will run in parallel with an extensive programme of inclusive stakeholder engagement, to improve the process of developing, implementing and reviewing regulations to meet our long-term public health and economic aims.”

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