Only 3% sugar cut out from food products in three years, PHE finds

Public Health England’s study likely to accelerate calls for further measures such as sugar tax

The food industry has cut out only 3% of sugar from its supermarket, cafe and restaurant products over the last three years, according to a damning report from Public Health England that will accelerate calls for taxes or other compulsory measures to be introduced.

PHE launched its flagship sugar reduction programme in 2016 with a mission to help bring down childhood obesity by introducing a voluntary target for the food industry to remove 20% of sugar by 2020. But the third year of data – gathered before the coronavirus outbreak Covid – suggests it is unattainable without a “big stick” such as taxation.

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