Germany proposes junk-food advertising restrictions

Tuesday, February 28, 2023
Lawmakers in Germany have proposed tightening regulations on junk-food advertising “to protect children’s health”. Adverts aimed at under 14s for food and drinks containing “too much” sugar, salt or fat should be banned, the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) said. Suggestions include banning junk-food adverts between 6am and 11pm across social media, outdoor and television marketing. Food and Agriculture Minister Cem Özdemir said the proposals have the backing of a “broad social alliance” which “emphatically demands comprehensive regulation”. However, the German Food Association said it “sharply rejects” the government’s claims food companies are profiteering from “ruining children’s health”. It criticised the definition of what would be banned, claiming it was unclear and could encompass 70% of food product adverts. It also argued there are “no reliable scientific studies on the effectiveness of advertising restrictions on overall nutrition and the development of childhood obesity”.
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