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Policies for healthy living environments

POLICY MAPPING / FOOD ENVIRONMENTS

 

Food environments shape what food we buy and eat. They are the physical, economic, socio-cultural and policy surroundings that affect the availability, accessibility, affordability and attractiveness of foods (Swinburn et al., 2015).

A selection of promising policies are mapped below to help create the framework conditions for healthy food environments. The measures are inspired by the World Health Organization’s Best buys and other recommended interventions for the prevention of non-communicable diseases (WHO, 2017).

Creating healthy food environments means ensuring that healthy food choices become the easiest, most attractive and affordable ones, thereby empowering a shift towards sustainable diets. This involves reshaping current incentives across the food chain, including in agriculture. Today, “food environments exploit people’s biological, psychological, social, and economic vulnerabilities, making it easier for them to eat unhealthy foods.” (The Lancet, 2015)

Levy on sugary products

 

Minimum VAT on fruit and vegetables

 

Legal limit on trans fats in food

 

Watershed on TV advertising of unhealthy food

 

Legal protections from the digital marketing of unhealthy food

 

Government endorsed front-of-pack nutrition label

 

Mandatory limits on salt in certain food products

 

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