Update from the Children's Food Campaign

Junk Food Marketing

Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP) announces new restrictions on junk food advertising on children’s media. 

The new rules prohibit less healthy food and drink being advertised across all forms of non-broadcast children’s media (including online, magazines, cinema ads and billboards). The rules are a positive step and may go some way to removing the most blatant forms of such advertising to under 16s. Hopefully this will include the child-friendly advert games & apps most favoured by confectionery companies.
The rules will come into force in July 2017.

Sugary drinks tax

The Treasury has published the Draft Finance Bill and the Soft Drinks Industry Levy was included within it. This was the next stage in the process which should hopefully lead to the levy becoming law and coming into force in April 2018.

Despite industry spending many £100,000s trying to block the measure, the tax is basically unchanged from the Treasury’s initial proposals, which is very welcome news.

  • Your voices supporting the levy have been heard, and appreciated, in Whitehall. 
  • The Children's Food Campaign has put the spotlight on Coca Cola and other soft drink companies’ huge lobbying efforts against the tax, and on the fact that some key food brands and manufacturers are not actually as hostile to it as their trade bodies are.
  • As part of the Obesity Health Alliance, the campaign has kept up media, political and public interest in sugar reduction measures such as the levy.

The Treasury has always been keen that this levy is aimed at tackling the worst offenders and the most popular forms of sugary drinks. That means that the most sugary dairy drinks will be exempt for example, as well as powdered drinks and syrups, however promotional freebies are included in the levy, as well as commitments from the Treasury on monitoring the levy once it has been introduced.

The actual tax rates have yet to be confirmed and should be announced by the Chancellor in the Budget next year. In the meantime both Tesco and Ribena-Lucozade have recently announced that they will reduce all of their products below the 5 grams sugar per 100ml tax threshold by 2018.

source children's food campaign 09.12.16
www.childrensfood.org.uk / www.taxthecan.org.uk