News on unhealthy food to children
| February 2015
On Februay 19, the WHO published
a tool to help countries reduce marketing of foods with too much fat, sugar and
salt to children.
This document was published following the
recommendations of the Vienna
Declaration (July 2013) regarding advertising and marketing of foods high
in energy, saturated fats, trans fatty acids, free sugars or salt. It includes a nutrient profile model
developed by the WHO Regional Office for Europe, which restricts the marketing
of certain foods based on nutrient profiles.The model was derived from two existing models developed respectively by
the Norwegian government and the Danish Forum of Responsible Food Marketing
Communication (endorsed by the Danish government).
The WHO nutrient profile model consists of a total of
17 food categories with international customs tariff codes helping with their
classification. Nutrients covered by the
model include: total fat, saturated fat, total sugars, added sugars, non-sugar
sweeteners, salt and energy.
The table provided either prohibits advertising and marketing, sets a
threshold under which advertising and marketing is permitted or permits
marketing for all products of that category.For instance, for all products falling under the category of "chocolate
and sugar confectionery, energy bars, and sweet toppings and desserts”
marketing is prohibited.
COFACE has been concerned about the role marketing can play in nutritional
habits of children. It has developed a tool called "Nutri-médias" for trainers
and parents to help them understand and be critical of the marketing practices
their children are exposed to, encouraging them to develop the critical
thinking of their children regarding advertising.
COFACE very much supports the idea of
restricting advertising based on the WHO nutrient profile model and hopes it
will be recommended by the EU Institutions and used proactively by Member
For more information about the WHO’s nutrient profile model, see the
official WHO website here
COFACE position on EU air quality policy: Worried parents demand clean air for their children - June 2014. Read more
As a member of the European Platform for Action on Diet, Physical Activity and Health
, COFACE is duty bound to take a stand on health, nutrition and obesity issues. The family is a key learning environment, and early childhood is when habits are learned that are apt to become entrenched. It is also useful to develop a culinary education within the family.
The platform creates a forum for actors at European level who can commit their membership to engage in concrete actions designed to contain or reverse current trends to overweight and obesity.
In 2008 COFACE hosted a seminar on nutrition in Sofia to give member associations an awareness of the importance of the issue and the need for urgent action by raising awareness among families. The seminar Nutrition: a family matter
was a commitment given by COFACE through its membership of the Platform.
In 2009 COFACE hosted a seminar on Health Determinants
. The aim was to focus on lesser-known health determinants like well-being, stress, and personal empowerment to point up the importance of a much more educational approach to tackling health problems rather than the traditional "authoritarian” method of lecturing people about healthy lifestyles (diet and exercise).
Published on 21 Nov 2008
Updated on 09 Mar 2015