Finally: No More Junk Ads Before 9pm
30 Jul 2021
We’re delighted that the Prime Minister has taken concrete action for child health with a 9pm watershed for junk food ads.
Our incredible Youth Board has been campaigning on this issue for months. And on 27th July, the Prime Minister finally announced tough new measures on how and when junk food can be advertised.
This new watershed forms part of Boris Johnson’s widely anticipated Obesity Strategy. In an attempt to tackle Britain's health crisis, Boris has now committed to protecting the health of millions of children by stemming the flood of junk food ads they’re force-fed from morning ‘til night.
We wrote to the Government demanding that the health of children and young people be put at the heart of British politics. COVID-19 showed us why change must happen in our food system: it must be healthier and fairer for everyone. For decades, advertisers have put cheap, low-nutrient, unhealthy food products in the spotlight, and encouraged us to overeat. We’ve had enough.
When Bite Back was launched in October 2019, we released a film that revealed just how influential junk food ads can be. We may think we’re immune to the manipulative tactics of global food giants, but it’s time for a wake-up call. Growing up in the UK right now, we face a flood of unhealthy food — at school, on our high streets, and on our screens.
Following the PM’s announcement, Bite Back Ambassador and male fashion model David Gandy said:
“This is fantastic news for the health of children and young people. As someone who has expressed concern that brands and people in the public eye need to think carefully about what is being promoted to children, I think today is a brilliant step forward. I commend the Prime Minister and Department of Health for listening and for the measure to include online advertising, which is so important if we’re serious about this matter.”
We hope the momentum will continue, and the spotlight will shift from junk onto healthier alternatives. It’s a great start, but we can always do more. At Bite Back, we’re constantly encouraging businesses to go further and faster on child health — so watch this space.