World Bank calls for end to subsidy and promotion of unhealthy foods

An unequivocal report from the World Bank argues for systemic changes on the part of  governments and food corporations, to tackle obesity and non-communicable diseases.

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The report begins with some stark facts: globally, overweight and obesity cost an estimated US$2 trillion per year, and 68% of all deaths worldwide are caused by non-communicable diseases (NCDs), of which three of the four most common are diet-related (namely cardiovascular diseases, cancers and diabetes).
Consequently, it says, food systems and food governance must change. In particular, it highlights the growing consumption of 'ultraprocessed' foods: 'Many experts believe that the rapid expansion of ultraprocessed foods, more than any other sub-system within the agriculture and food system, is the major factor in the obesity epidemic'.
The report calls for the elimination of subsidies for the production of unhealthy ingredients for food processing, and urges governments to use taxes to discourage consumption, as well as regulating access and promotion. Corporations should reformulate products to reduce unhealthy ingredients and boost nutritional value.
Read the report, An overview of links between obesity and food systems, here.
The Sustain alliance campaigns for greener, healthier and fairer food systems, for everyone. Find out more about our activities and support us  here.

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Children's Food Campaign: Better food and food teaching for children in schools, and protection of children from junk food marketing are the aims of Sustain's high-profile Children's Food Campaign. We also want clear food labelling that can be understood by everyone, including children.


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Sustain: the alliance for better food and farming

Sustain advocates food and agriculture policies and practices that enhance the health and welfare of people and animals, improve the working and living environment, promote equity and enrich society and culture.