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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-13677: Michelle Ballantyne (South Scotland)

Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Date lodged: 5 January 2018

To ask the Scottish Government, in light of the proposals by Public Health England to limit children’s snacks to 100 calories, whether it will consider a similar approach for Scotland in an effort to tackle childhood obesity.

Answered by: Aileen Campbell 26 January 2018

Limiting the contribution of calories from sugary or fatty snacks is a positive step towards tackling obesity. However, many of the 100 calorie snacks that are commercially available contain as much as half the recommended daily sugar intake for a child. Food Standards Scotland’s Let’s Change our Future campaign, aimed at parents of primary school aged children, contains advice about dropping or swapping snacks. This campaign has been run twice now with an independent evaluation showing it succeeding in its objectives to make parents think differently about the long-term health consequences of their children’s snacking habits.

The Scottish Government has taken a broad range of measures to support the promotion of healthy food to children including Eat Better Feel Better, our social marketing campaign. Healthy snacking forms a central part our 2018 campaign which aims to encourage and empower families to make simple yet effective healthy food and snack choices.

We are presently consulting on a bold new diet and obesity strategy. This proposes a package of measures to improve the food environment and improve children’s diet including limiting the promotion of products high in fat, sugar and salt and tackling advertising. The consultation on A Healthier Future - Action and Ambitions on Diet, Activity and Healthy Weight' runs until 31 January 2018.