Blog: Dean BestDouble+ Britain

Dean Best | 15 August 2008

According to a leading UK government advisor, the threat to the nation posed by obesity is as great as that of terrorism.
 
The BBC reported yesterday (14 August) that Durham University public health expert Professor David Hunter said ministers should be taking "bold action" now, before we become a nation of fatties and the NHS is overwhelmed.

And, if Hunter had his way, this action would include forcing manufacturers to cut salt, fat and sugar from products.

"The government was quick to move for things like ID cards or 42-day detention without trial - now it needs to show similar leadership in public health. The threat to our future health is just as significant as the current security threat," Hunter said.

So, according to Hunter it isn’t enough that the government is eroding our civil liberties to ‘protect us’ from terrorism. The government should also have control over what we put in our bellies.

Responding to criticism being levelled at the food industry over rising obesity levels, companies have voluntarily reformulated many of their products and introduced low salt, fat and sugar alternatives.
 
But ultimately, what consumers choose to eat should remain in their hands. If the government is going to take action on obesity, it should raise public awareness of dietary issues and educate people about the evils of trans fats etc in an accessible fashion.

To legislate what can and cannot be eaten is a draconian measure that pushes the idea of the nanny state a little too far. Are we destined for an Orwellian future where The Ministry of Plenty dictate what we eat? Double plus good though!

To read the BBC's full report, click here.

Katy Humphries, Deputy Editor


BLOG

Barilla puts sustainability centre stage

Barilla's 2016 results statement, published last week, makes interesting reading, not because of the Italian food group's commercial performance, but for the emphasis placed on sustainability achievem...

BLOG

UK M&A deal volumes slide in early months of 2017

Fresh data from Grant Thornton indicates the number of mergers and acquisitions in the UK food and drink sector fell to the lowest level for over two years in the first quarter of in 2017 - but the ac...

BLOG

Food policy returns to focus in Westminster

Amid the political turmoil in the UK caused by the EU Referendum, the resignation of a Prime Minister, subsequent burning debates over the Brexit “divorce” settlement and now by the surprise announcem...

BLOG

Danone closes WhiteWave, who will acquire Stonyfield?

Danone completed its US$12.5bn acquisition of WhiteWave Foods this week. The move will roughly double Danone's presence in North America, where WhiteWave is a top four dairy player. ...

just-food homepage



Forgot your password?