Vienna, VA (PRWEB) July 05, 2013
The U.K. Department of Health is considering requiring retailers to spend a portion of their marketing budgets to promote healthy food rather than unhealthy snacks, as well as restricting marketing of junk food that is targeted at children. The changes under consideration are described in an article in the Telegraph by Steve Hawkes entitled "'Unhealthy' multi buys targeted in new obesity crackdown." According to the article, the UK Department of Health is considering reaching "responsibility deals" with the food industry that would alter the way that food products are marketed, including by reaching agreements to spend more of their marketing budgets on healthier food.
According to the same article, the changes are out without political controversy in the UK. First, the opposition Labour Party has said that they do not believe that supermarkets will adopt changes in their policies without the government first introducing legislation. Second, a Health Department spokeswoman said that the proposals were still in the early stage and had not been finalized. According to the article, one of the reasons why the government is thinking about moving forward with this policy is because Britain's state-run National Health Service is spending billions of pounds covering the health care costs of the obese.
The UK is not the only country that is affected by rising health care costs that are triggered by obesity. A report published in September 2012 by the Robert Wood Johnson foundation and the Trust for America's Health that is entitled "F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America's Future 2012" describes the potential increases in healthcare costs if present trends involving increased obesity rates continue. According to this study, if present trends continue then there are nine states that could have more than 50 percent of their population suffering from obesity by 2030. Additionally, the report also states that the annual health care costs of obesity range from between $147 to $150 billion annually.
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