Greg is calling on the Government to require more detailed labelling of food products, particularly ultra-processed food, to enable consumers to have a better-informed choice when shopping.
Ultra-processed food (UPF) is linked to heart, kidney and liver disease as well as depression. In most cases most of the food’s beneficial value is destroyed by industrial processing. UPF’s also contain many additives such as preservatives, emulsifiers, sweeteners and artificial colours and flavours.
Sir Greg said: “Ultra-processed foods make up around half the calories consumed in the average UK diet, with the largest consumption by children.”
Calling for consumers to be able to make better informed choices by the introduction of specific labelling on UPF products, Sir Greg said: “In my view ultra-processed food should carry a health warning, similar to the warnings on cigarette packets.”
Sir Greg adds: “There is currently no formally recognised definition of UPF and some are less harmful and more nutritious than others, whilst others are packed with sugar and salt. One idea that merits consideration is ‘traffic-light’ style labelling which would give consumers a more informed choice about the food they eat”.
In the last decade, the evidence has been slowly growing that too much ultra-processed food is harmful”.