Jamie Oliver threatens Eton Mess protest over government's childhood obesity ‘U-turn'

18 May 2022 by
Jamie Oliver threatens Eton Mess protest over government's childhood obesity ‘U-turn'

Chef Jamie Oliver has demanded Boris Johnson reconsider a "reckless U-turn" on the government's childhood obesity strategy.

The chef posted on Instagram saying that if the prime minister did not reverse the decision to delay junk food restrictions within 36 hours, he called on the British public to attend a protest outside Number 10 Downing Street on Friday afternoon (20 May) with an Eton Mess dessert "symbolising the privilege and the mess that is our British government and its inability to do the right thing".

"This child health strategy is not a luxury, it's a necessity," he said, calling on chefs, campaigners and nutritionists, as well as parents, teachers and children, for "no mess, no shouting, just positivity and support".

Restrictions on multi-buy deals and advertising foods high in fat, salt or sugar have been delayed for a year, which the government said was due to the cost of living crisis and to give the industry more time to prepare for the restrictions on advertising.

This would have seen multi-buy deals on foods and drinks high in fat, salt, or sugar (HFSS) banned – including buy one get one free (BOGOF), ‘three for two', and restrictions on free refills for soft drinks.

A ban on HFSS adverts on TV before 9pm and paid-for adverts online was also paused for a year and is now set to come into force January 2024. The government said this was due to a delay to the Health and Care Bill receiving royal assent, and to give the industry more time to prepare.

A consultation on TV and paid-for adverts online will be launched in the coming weeks.

Rules restricting the placement of less healthy products in key locations such as checkouts, store entrances and aisle ends will go ahead in October as planned.

Last month saw laws on calorie labelling in large restaurants, cafes and takeaways come into force.

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