Obesity and food standards top election priorities

Tackling obesity and maintaining UK food standards are among the priorities food sector stakeholders have set out ahead of next month’s general election.

The Food and Drink Federation, in its manifesto, urged the next government to tackle obesity and other dietary concerns “through a holistic, evidence-based partnership which reflects real lifestyles”. It said that the government must “look past a fixation on what we can cut from our diets”, and focus on increasing “positive elements” such as fruit, vegetables and wholegrains.

It also called for government support on efforts to make food production and consumption more environmentally sustainable, and to prioritise the closest possible UK-EU trade and regulatory relationship.

Sustain, the alliance for better food and farming, echoed the call for an orderly Brexit that minimises the impact on the UK’s food, farmers and fishers. It added that the next government should “commit to maintaining and enhancing food, farming, marine conservation, antibiotics stewardship and environmental standards in future trade deals”.

UKHospitality, meanwhile, is calling on the next government to “act decisively to support the sector” by reforming the business rates system, boosting take-home pay for hospitality sector employees, and incentivising infrastructure investment.

It said that if the UK leaves the EU there should be a “thorough review and concerted campaign around EU regulations”, with the aim of removing or amending regulations that hamper business but that do not provide protection to the environment or workers.

The election takes place on 12 December with polls currently suggesting a Conservative majority is the most likely outcome.

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