Nutrition, UK Government

What does industry think of the new obesity strategy?

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The Uk Government has announced a new obesity strategy which it hopes will tackle the growing problem of obesity in the country, and lead to more positive health outcomes. The Covid-19 pandemic has further highlighted the impact obesity can have on overall health and wellbeing, so focusing on this issue is important to everyone.

However, do the plans go far enough? Are these interventions likely to lead to a positive result or should they be addressing areas that could be more impactful? To get their insight we’ve assembled a panel featuring the Food and Drink Federation, University of London and Association of Convenience Stores to discover how these measures will impact industry, and whether they’re the right approach to solving the obesity problem.

About our panel

Professor Martin Caraher, PhD and Msc, Emeritus Professor of Food and Health Policy Centre for Food Policy, City, University of London

Martin trained as an EHO in Dublin before moving into public health and health promotion work. He was a founder member of the London Food Board and was the public health representative on the London 2012 Olympic Food Advisory Board. In 2012/13 he was the ‘Thinker in Residence’ at Deakin University, Melbourne and was the Australian Healthway’s fellow for 2008 and again in 2016.

His work covers the range from food access in local communities, through work on food taxes, school food, fast food to food banks and food poverty.

Martin has published over 160 articles, 5 books and 30 books chapters. He lives with his wife Maggie in west London and in his spare time he runs, reads, goes to live music events the cinema & theatre, gardens and plays with his four grandchildren (pre COVID-19).

Kate Halliwell, Head of UK Diet and Health Policy, FDF

Kate’s role involves the development, implementation and promotion of FDF’s nutrition and health policies across a broad remit, from product reformulation through to workplace wellbeing approaches. This includes extensive liaison with food companies to develop cross-industry policy positions and responding to scientific consultations. Previously Kate worked for the Department of Health and the Food Standards Agency on a range of nutrition policies. Kate sits on the Nutrition Society Council representing industry and is a registered nutritionist.

Chris Noice, Communications Director, Association for Convenience Stores

Chris joined ACS in October 2009 having graduated from York University with a degree in English and Linguistics. As Communications Director, Chris is responsible for all ACS external and internal communications, media relations and a growing research portfolio which includes the industry leading Local Shop Report. Chris is an official spokesperson for ACS, appearing frequently on national and regional radio and television including BBC News, Sky News, BBC Breakfast and the Daily Politics show. Chris completed the Chartered Institute of Public Relations Diploma in 2013 and the CIM Strategic Marketing Masterclass in 2017.

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