As nutrition is now the major cause of death and disability in the UK, it is vital that responsibility for nutrition is handed back to an independent agency that can carry out a scientifically-backed programme which is not subject to constant change, and political interference. Responsibility for nutrition was removed from the respected Food Standards Agency to the Department of Health in 2010.
The Food Network Responsibility Deal has not worked, brings the Department of Health into disrepute and supermarkets do not regard it as fit for purpose. Competitive industries can prosper effectively only with a level playing field but current policies and the absence of proper policing without any sanctions allows the more irresponsible manufacturers to sabotage willing and responsible supermarkets and other companies.
Very little progress has been made over the last 4-5 years, which is a tragedy given the fact that by far the biggest cause of death and disability in the UK is due to the food we eat, through its very high salt, sugar and fat content and the lack of fruit and vegetables. It is therefore vital that a much more robust and responsible mechanism is re-established. The agency for nutrition must have regulatory powers to penalise noncompliant food and drink companies.
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