The Food Standards Agency has cited reports that they plan to impose a ‘fat tax’ on junk food as ‘over exaggerated’.
Reports in the national press today claim the FSA plan to consult on whether a tax on high fat foods such as milk, cheese and butter would encourage consumers to make healthier choices.
However, a spokesperson from the FSA told BigHospitality the reports, based on an interview given by the government body’s chief executive Tim Smith to trade publication EU Food Law, was ‘exaggerated’.
“Smith said that the FSA board would have a preliminary discussion about price being an issue when people decide what food to buy, but that was it – nothing as far down the line as this report,” he said.
“We can’t ignore that price plays a part in consumers’ food decisions, but we have to talk about it. There are no plans at the moment to put a tax on high fat foods I’m afraid. The FSA will meet and talk about it in the autumn.”
FSA urges hospitality to fight fat
Back in March, Dr Clair Baynton, head of nutrition at the FSA, accused the hospitality industry of not doing enough to change consumer eating habits, claiming the industry needed to do more to reduce salt, sugar, fat and portion sizes.
“Eating out influences consumer preferences and the industry is not doing enough to make the food it serves healthier,” she said.