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Scottish plan to halve obesity by 2030

Scotland’s forthcoming obesity plan will include tough new measures to tackle junk food promotions, including a clampdown on multi-buy offers that encourage overconsumption.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon outlined the measures during a meeting with chef and campaigner Jamie Oliver in London this week, in which she also pledged to cut childhood obesity in half in Scotland by 2030.

The Scottish Government will set the target in its Healthy Weight and Diet plan, due to be published in the summer. Currently, 29% of children in Scotland are at risk of being overweight, including 14% who are at risk of being obese.

“Our guiding ambition is to halve child obesity in Scotland by 2030 and we’ll outline in our forthcoming Healthy Weight plan how we will develop the necessary actions to achieve this, and help everybody make healthy choices about food,” said Sturgeon.

Oliver said he looked forward to seeing a “strong, multi-layered strategy”.

The Food and Drink Federation Scotland, however, told The Scotsman newspaper it was disappointed the Scottish Government continues to talk about legislating to restrict food and drink promotions and advertising rather than working in partnership with the food and drink industry.

The plan is also expected to set out Scotland’s first sector specific strategy for out of home food providers, which was outlined in a consultation document last year. The strategy is likely to include action on calorie labelling, portion size and calorie cap options, and promotions and marketing as well as advice on healthier cooking methods and reformulation, and nutritional standards for public sector procurement.