Fast food companies to help write policy on health and diet

Fri, 19 Nov 2010
McDonalds, KFC, PepsiCo and Mars are amongst the companies who have been brought in to help draft policy on health matters such as obesity, alcohol and diet related diseases such as type 2 diabetes .

The idea is to improve health via a voluntary approach based on 'responsibility deal' networks rather than through regulation. Also present amongst these companies on the networks are consumer group Which?, The Fitness Industry Association, Cancer Research and the major supermarkets.

Public reaction has viewed the collaboration as something of an early April fool; finding it hard to believe that companies who have helped to fuel these health problems have been invited to help overcome them.

The responsibility deals were conceived by the Public Health Commission and Minister of Health, Andrew Lansley to bring big business to the table to contribute towards health policy guidelines. The commission is chaired by Unilever Chairman, Dave Lewis and also includes the then CEO of Diabetes UK, Douglas Smallwood.

Leading health experts such as Professor Ian Gilmour and the British Medical Association have voiced their concerns, recognizing that the businesses involved will have their own agendas to protect within the networks.
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