Following the publication of recommendations from the Commons Health and Social Care Committee on the forthcoming Childhood Obesity Plan, Dairy UK has issued the following statement:
Dr Judith Bryans, chief executive of Dairy UK, said: “We fully recognise that tackling childhood obesity is a major challenge and no effort should be spared in making progress in this area.
“Dairy UK supports the principle of what the committee is trying to achieve. However, we do not agree with the extension of the Soft Drinks Industry Levy to include all milk-based drinks. This would have a detrimental impact on the marketing of high quality, safe and nutritious dairy products – products which are nutritionally beneficial to children rather than being harmful.
“Milk and dairy products Milk are proven sources of vitamins and minerals including calcium, iodine, vitamin B12, and riboflavin as well as protein, making dairy an important part of a healthy, balanced, affordable and sustainable diet. Regrettably, because of the way the Nutrient Profiling Model has been developed dairy products end up being penalised alongside junk foods.
“Milk-based drinks should, in our view, be exempt from the recommendations made by the committee. Dairy UK will be engaging with Public Health England, the UK Government and other relevant stakeholders to explain why the new Nutrient Profile Modelling should exclude any product containing over 75% milk, cheese or yogurt, on the basis of the contributions they make to children’s nutrient intakes and the benefits they provide.”