Health Canada’s proposal to restrict marketing to children – our response

We have responded to a consultation on Health Canada’s proposed approach to restrict unhealthy food and drink marketing to children.

In a new discussion paper, Toward Restricting Unhealthy Food and Beverage Marketing to Children, Health Canada prioritises developing mandatory government regulated restrictions on the marketing of unhealthy food and drink to children.

Children are particularly vulnerable to food marketing and self-regulation by industry has been ineffective at reducing exposure of children to the marketing of unhealthy food and drinks. We therefore advocate for and support the development of mandatory regulations to restrict all forms of marketing of unhealthy food and drink to children, as part of a comprehensive policy approach to reduce overweight, obesity and diet-related NCDs by promoting healthy diets.

Our Senior Policy & Public Affairs Manager, Bryony Sinclair, commented: “It is encouraging to see Health Canada proposing such comprehensive restrictions to protect children from the negative impacts of food and drink marketing.

“In particular we are pleased that the proposed restrictions cover both traditional and digital media, as modern marketing is pervasive and especially influential among younger generations.”

If Health Canada puts into place what is proposed in their discussion paper, it will be one of the world’s most robust approaches to restrict the marketing of unhealthy food and drink to children.

We encourage others to respond to Health Canada’s consultation, which is open until 14 August 2017.

Read our consultation response (pdf).