Foodstuffs announces pledge to help reduce childhood obesity
In January this year the United Nations released the Commission
on Ending Childhood Obesity (ECHO) report stating that the world
was facing a global epidemic in childhood obesity with the number
of overweight children under the age of five predicted to jump to
as high as 70 million over the next decade.
Foodstuffs (NZ) Ltd, Managing Director, Steve Anderson says, "As
the largest food retailer in New Zealand, we have a role to play in
helping support the Government's Childhood Obesity Plan and create
healthier communities that will thrive in the long-term."
As part of its support for the Government's Plan the key areas
Foodstuffs has pledged to focus on are:
- Promoting the consumption of healthy foods by reformulating
private label products to improve their nutritional profile and
enable healthier eating.
- Providing education on diet, nutrition and physical activity
through the Food for Thought Charitable Trust.
- Completing the roll out of Health Star Ratings across our
private label portfolio in support of the Government's message that
consumption of foods high in fat, sugar and salt should be
- Ensuring all marketing activities comply with the relevant ASA
Codes including an updated Code of Advertising to Children.
"We believe that long-term change can be achieved if consumers
are supported through a wide range of initiatives that help people
make more informed choices, including greater access to healthier
alternatives through reformulation," says Anderson. "We have
committed to reformulate our private label products so that by the
end of 2018 the sugar and sodium content will be reduced by 10% and
saturated fat content continues to be reduced across the
Anderson adds that the levels of these nutrients in new private
label products will be given careful consideration, and Foodstuffs
will champion the reformulation cause with its suppliers. "We have
created a new Supplier Award designed specifically to recognise
suppliers' commitment to change in this area."
"By pledging to reduce Childhood Obesity and collaborating with
Government we hope to begin to see a reduction in the number of
children who are overweight and obese," says Anderson. "Our Food
for Thought programme which is a free nutrition education course
sponsored by Pams, helps Year 5 and 6 primary school students (9-10
year olds) make healthy food and lifestyle choices."
"This community based initiative has been designed and developed
by nutritionists and teachers working within the New Zealand Health
and Physical Education curriculum, and has reached more than
110,000 children since it began in 2007."
Foodstuffs has been an active supporter of the Health Star
Rating (HSR) scheme and since its launch in 2014 has been actively
rolling out the labelling scheme across its private label
"To date we have 40% of the brand's 1500 products carrying HSR
and we are now committed to completing the rollout to the entire
portfolio by the end of 2018" says Anderson. "As a company we are
very supportive of the HSR as we believe it provides consumers with
a clear guide on how to assess the healthiness of a product
compared with other products across a category."
You can read the pledge