Thursday, January 21, 2010

South Korea does what USA refuses to do: Restrict junk food advertising to children


Advertising of food high in fat, sugar and salt will be banned from all TV from 5pm to 7pm, the health ministry said, and will also be prohibited during children's programmes shown at any time.

The restrictions will apply to hamburgers, pizzas, instant noodles, chocolate and other candies and ice cream.

"The ban, to be enforced this month or in early February, applies to high-calorie, low-nutrient food, snacks and sweets," a ministry official in charge of food safety said.

Official data showed more than one-third of ads aired during children's TV programmes were for food, mostly for sweets, instant noodles and soft drinks.

Consumer groups have called for stricter measures to protect children from junk food, saying one out of five children in South Korea is overweight.

In March last year, the ministry banned the sale of junk food and drinks in schools and their neighbourhoods in a bid to tackle the growing problem of child obesity.

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