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Scottish food is under fire

FSS takes aim at ‘unhealthy’ options

SCOTLAND’S food industry could be facing increased regulation in future, if recent recommendations from Food Standards Scotland (FSS) are taken forward.

Food for thought: Food Standards Scotland has its sights set on produce that is high in fat, salt and sugar, calling for more regulation that could affect retailers.

The public sector food body for Scotland has set down a number of recommendations aimed at improving the nation’s diet, including a call for increased regulations on food eaten out of home.

FSS suggestions include calorie labelling on menus, reductions in portion sizes and regulation of promotion of “unhealthy foods and drinks”, all of which could impact on Scottish retailers.

So-called ‘HFSS foods’ –foods high in fat, salt or sugar – are at the heart of the FSS recommendations, with the body recommending that regulation of promotions of these products be taken forward “as a matter of urgency”.

The recommendations do recognise that there would be a “need for support and assistance” for small to medium-sized businesses, including for Scottish food firms that wish to reformulate their products.

FSS chair Ross Finnie said there has been “concrete progress over the past year” from FSS, government and business to address problems with Scotland’s diet, but suggested there is still far to go.

“We’ve been missing our dietary goals in Scotland since these were first set more than 20 years ago, it’s clear that moves towards improving Scotland’s diet need to be more rapid, more robust and more effective,” he said.

“The food environment outside of the home has a vital role to play in helping people in Scotland have access to the information and options they need to make healthier choices, and Food Standards Scotland has today proposed an additional set of recommendations designed to deliver just that.” 

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