Local State MPs have been lobbied by the Cancer Council NSW and Public Health Association Australia for the removal of junk food marketing on NSW government property.
The call to remove unhealthy food marketing on government owned and controlled property such as public transport follows new Cancer Council NSW research showing 7 in 10 NSW adults are concerned about outdoor junk food ads.
Cancer Council NSW’s Director of Cancer Prevention and Advocacy, Anita Dessaix said: “A healthy childhood is the foundation of a healthy life. However, this is all but impossible when children are constantly targeted by the food industry with unhealthy food and drink marketing when simply catching a train or bus to school.
“It is no coincidence that more than 80% of food ads in major train stations and buses have been found to be promoting unhealthy foods and drinks.”
Adjunct Professor Terry Slevin, CEO of the Public Health Association of Australia says that in NSW almost 1 in 4 children are classified as overweight or obese with no sign of decline.
“If the next NSW Government wants to show leadership in obesity prevention, it must stop taking money from food companies that promote fast food and sugary drinks on public buses and trains our kids use to travel to school.
“Having excess body weight as an adult is a risk factor for 13 types of cancer, including, bowel, kidney, oesophagus, pancreas, endometrium and breast. It also increases the risk of other chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
“Reducing children’s exposure to unhealthy food marketing is recognised as an important action to address the increase in obesity rates and the related health effects.
“The ACT, London, and Amsterdam have acted. We urge the next NSW Government to follow suit.”
Ray Williams MP said: “I am in full support of the NSW Government’s Healthy Eating and Active Living Strategy 2022-2032 which addresses healthy food and healthy built environments and includes investigating options to expand the availability and promotion of healthy food and drink choices in government settings.”