Consultation on restricting promotion of unhealthy food

Mar 18, 2024

The Scottish Government has opened a public consultation on the details of proposed regulations to restrict promotions of food and drink high in fat, sugar or salt

This consultation seeks views on the detail of proposed regulations to restrict the promotions of HFSS foods where they are sold to the public, including across retail and out of home settings, both in-store and online. The types of foods we are proposing to target include, among other things, confectionery, cakes, crisps, savoury snacks and soft drinks with added sugar. Promotions we are considering include among other things, multi-buys, temporary price reductions, meal deals and positioning restrictions, such as at checkouts and front of store.

The primary aim of the policy is to reduce the public health harms associated with the excess consumption of calories, fat, sugar and salt, including the risks of developing type 2 diabetes, various types of cancer and other conditions such as cardiovascular disease. We are also aware of the need to reduce diet-related health inequalities, including in relation to socioeconomic disadvantage, and for the policy to support our aim to halve childhood obesity by 2030.

Restricting the promotion of less healthy food and drink is intended to make it easier for people to spend less on HFSS products and make healthier choices, in line with our public health priority to create a Scotland where everyone eats well and has a healthy weight.

The consultation proposals have been informed by the feedback to the 2022 consultation and extensive engagement with stakeholders.

In this consultation, we are seeking views on the detail of proposed regulations to restrict HFSS promotions including:

  • targeted foods within the scope of restrictions;
  • price promotions within the scope of restrictions, including meal deals and temporary price reductions;
  • the approach to placement restrictions of targeted foods in store and online;
  • the qualifying businesses within the scope of restrictions, including proposed exemptions;
  • the proposed approach to enforcement and implementation.

Read the consultation paper. The consultation paper contains full background information for this consultation. You may find it useful to read or refer to while responding.

This consultation is open until 21st May 2024.