News Children's Food Campaign

Boots to kick the junk off its checkouts

The high street retailer and pharmacy chain Boots has promised to remove sweets and chocolates from its tills by mid-April. This is a significant victory for the Children's Food Campaign's junk free checkouts campaign, as Boots is the first major non-food company to make this move.  The announcement comes after the issue was highlighted on a recent ITV Tonight documentary.

Boots has announced that: "We have already begun reducing the visibility of chocolate and sweets throughout our stores, including at tills, and our intention is to have our tills free of all chocolate and sweets by mid-April."

Boots is the first high street non-food retailer to make this move, but follows in the well-trodden path set by Lidl, Tesco and Aldi in 2014 and more recently Morrisions and some branches of M&S.  

Children's Food Campaign co-ordinator Malcolm Clark welcomed the news:

 "This decision by Boots is very positive; though we await confirmation of the full list of products Boots have pledged to remove from their tills, and whether it covers all of their stores nationwide."

"For non-food retailers - stores like Boots, Superdrug, Topshop, WHSmith and Homebase - the question is why these products are even there in the first place? People are sick and tired of these nudges for less healthy food, particularly in stores which having nothing to do with food."

"For supermarkets the issue of junk at the checkouts has now reached a tipping point, with many having recently stopped the practice. But it has taken twenty years of campaigning by parents, dietetians and dentists to get there. What we need now is a brave and bold government strategy, which includes mandatory actions to be taken by retailers to end the promotion of less healthy food and drink to children."

Media coverage: MailOnline

Junk Free Checkouts campaign webpage

Published Monday 14 March 2016

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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