New call for cigarette-style warnings on sweet packets

28 June 2017

Health experts are demanding sweet packets come with cigarette-style warnings on the front.

First, it was a call for a sugar tax, but now health experts are demanding sweet packets come with cigarette-style warnings on the front.

Cigarette packets have had warnings on them since as far back as the ‘60s, but in modern times most countries now require the packaging to come with large warning words and pictures depicting just how harmful smoking can be, including images of gangrene feet and blackened lungs.

Since the cautions became compulsory, smoking rates have dropped.

Read more: The secret’s out – SA to get a sugar tax

Now The Sun newspaper is reporting that doctors want sweet wrappers to be given the same treatment, with messages detailing the effect they have on rotting teeth and obesity in children.

“We want healthier children and we need a long-term policy,” said Dr. Latifa Patel, who will propose the motion on behalf of her district. “We are hoping for the same sort of effect that warnings on cigarette packets have had on smoking.

“Even confectioners, I presume, have a responsibility – just like the smoking industry – to make sure their products are consumed in a responsible manner. So, I think confectioners will like having warnings on their sweets about sugar content and advice to brush your teeth after.”

Read more: I quit sugar for one month – here’s what happened

The proposed policy will be discussed at the British Medical Association’s annual conference in Bournemouth, England, this week.

Both obesity and tooth decay rates in children continue to rise in the U.K. and countries around the world, with tooth decay the number one reason why children are admitted to hospital in Britain.

It’s also been estimated that a third of kids aged two to 15 are now overweight or obese.

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