Brits show ‘overwhelming’ support for healthier everyday foods
20/11/2018 - 06:00
Over 90% of Brits want food companies to reduce the amount of sugar and calories in ‘everyday’ foods and drinks, Public Health England (PHE) has today (20 November) revealed.

The same amount (90%) said they support the government working with the food industry to make food healthier – listing the NHS as one of their biggest reasons, as 79% believe obesity has a ‘negative impact’ on the service.

This comes from a new survey commissioned by PHE and carried out by Ipsos MORI, which found that:

  • Over 90% of consumers think obesity is a problem in the UK - 79% believe it has a negative impact on the NHS
  • Only cancer (47% of people) and mental health (43%) are seen as bigger health concerns than obesity (39%)
  • 90% claim the ‘greatest responsibility’ for tackling obesity lies with individuals and families; 80% with the food industry; and 72% with government
  • 87% would also like to see supermarkets replace unhealthy products at tills with healthier alternatives

It comes as PHE chief executive Duncan Selbie will announce that the organisation will “highlight where progress has not been made on sugar reduction next year”, at the Food Matters Live event (London) today.

Adding: “Obesity is the pandemic of modern times. Customers are saying they want faster progress from the food industry and in particular those businesses that have taken little or no action. We will be publicly reporting on these during 2019.”

PHE chief nutritionist Dr Alison Tedstone, said: “Severe obesity in 10 to 11 year olds is at an all-time high. Plans to improve the nation’s diet are often described as ‘nanny state’ interference, but it’s clear people want healthier food and they expect the industry to play their full part in this.”