EU action on health-related aspects of nutrition and physical activity: latest developments

On the 6th of April, the European Commission’s High Level Group on Nutrition and Physical activity held a meeting during which the UK Childhood Obesity and Food Policy and the French nutrition policy were presented, before the European Commission highlighted the latest developments of the EU action on audiovisual commercial communications of foods targeting children.

The joint meeting of the High level group and the EU Platform for Action on Diet, Physical Activity and Health convened on the same day particularly addressed the issues of childhood obesity in the EU Member States and Food product improvement from the Dutch EU Presidency’s perspective. EU Health Commissioner Andriukaitis urged members of the group and the platform to strengthen their collaboration in order to effectively implement the EU Action Plan on Childhood Obesity and to support national actions on food reformulation, especially on added sugars.

The plenary meeting of the Platform on the 7th of April “Diet, physical activity and health – a European platform for action” was the occasion to engage in a multi-stakeholder discussion on combined and integrated action to address the issue. Focus topics of the discussions included responsible marketing and advertising, audiovisual commercial communications, media literacy, health literacy and consumers’ food choices, and diabetes, with a special attention given to childhood.

During the meetings, the needs to improve health literacy amongst the population, promote healthy diets – especially targeting the youngest population groups – and develop responsible marketing communication strategies were presented as key action points to promote healthy living in Europe and prevent the occurrence of diseases.

More information here.

The Platform and the High Level Group recently met on the 2nd and 3rd of June. Issues discussed during the meeting included the new EU School Scheme, EU policy on chronic diseases, and food reformulation. An overview of the commitments in the areas of “Food reformulation” and “consumer information including labelling” was provided during the Platform’s meeting. For both, it was reported that the total number of active commitments has slightly decreased since 2013, with no new commitment in 2016 as of the date of the meeting. The active commitments in 2016 are implemented by the food industry and associations, and the general public is the largest target group, followed by children and young people.

More information here.