UK Govt enforces new calorie labeling rule to enhance nation’s health

UK Govt enforces new calorie labeling rule to enhance nation’s health
The UK government has reportedly implemented new rules that require food labels and menus to display calorie information.

The changes, which were sanctioned by the parliament last year, depict that larger businesses with over 250 employees including restaurants, cafes, and takeaways are legally bounded to display calorific information on soft drinks and non-prepacked foods.

The calorie information is required to be displayed on online menus, food delivery platforms, third-party apps, menus, and food labels at the point a consumer is making their choices for drink or food. Along with calorie listing for every food item, labels, and menus will also need including daily recommendations for calorie requirements.

The regulation, which forms part of the administration’s strategy to counter obesity, intends to assure people to make healthier, informed decisions when it comes to ordering takeaways or eating food outside. Displaying calorific information may also foster businesses to offer low-calorie alternatives for their consumers.

It is expected that obesity and overweight-related conditions across the United Kingdom will cost NHS nearly £6.1 billion every year. Around 63% of adults in England are living with obesity and close to 40% of children leave primary school obese and overweight. Obesity is also the UK’s second-biggest cause of cancer.

The COVID-19 pandemic has shed some light on the impact obesity has on people’s health, and as part of its initiative to level up the nation’s health, the administration is also requesting smaller businesses to integrate calorie labeling.

Public Health Minister Maggie Throup believes that such measures are crucial building blocks to make it easier for people to choose healthier foods.

The latest official data showcases that in 2019/20, there were more than one million admissions in hospitals where obesity was the main or secondary cause, a 17% rise from 2018/19 when there were nearly 876,000 admissions related to obesity.

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