The Dutch government is ignoring opportunities to encourage people to make healthy food choices and could make a start by banning all advertising for food targeting children which does not fit into health eating plans, say researchers at Wageningen and Utrecht universities.
Other options would include cutting or scrapping value added tax on fruit and veg, introducing a tax on sugar or banning fast food restaurants from setting up near schools, the researchers say.
The researchers point out that in 2018, almost 15% of the Dutch population were considered to be obese, compared with just 6% in 1990.
The research into government policy to promote healthy eating was undertaken as part of an EU joint policy evaluation programme. It focused on official strategy relating to the composition of food products, labelling, prizes, marketing and retail.
‘Overweight, obesity and diet-related non-communicable diseases have risen dramatically in the past decennia,