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Poll: Majority of Scots back ban on junk food offers

Cancer Research UK wants supermarket promotions for unhealthy food to be restricted.

Health: Poll ahead of obesity debate in Scottish Parliament.
Health: Poll ahead of obesity debate in Scottish Parliament.

A majority of Scots support plans to restrict supermarket price offers on unhealthy junk food, a poll has found.

The survey for Cancer Research UK found calls for the Scottish Government to restrict price promotions for fatty, sugary and salty food were supported by 62% of adults in Scotland.

It also found 82% of Scots said supermarket deals which offered extra items for free encouraged people to buy unhealthy food.

The YouGov research comes ahead of a debate on Scotland's obesity problem in the Scottish Parliament on Thursday.

Two-thirds of those surveyed said they were worried about their weight or the weight of someone in their immediate family.

'Obesity is linked to 13 different types of cancer.'
Professor Linda Bauld

Professor Linda Bauld, Cancer Research UK's cancer prevention expert, said: "This survey shows that obesity is a worry for all of us - and with good reason.

"Obesity is linked to 13 different types of cancer.

"When we stock our cupboards with cheap chocolate, crisps and biscuits, we are getting far more than we bargained for.

"Obesity costs us dearly and this survey tells us the public want action."

The Holyrood debate will take place before World Cancer Day on February 4.

Prof Bauld continued: "On World Cancer Day, we hope politicians will unite to call time on obesity in Scotland.

"In the fight against obesity, laws to restrict the tempting junk food deals that are at the heart of Scotland's poor diet will be crucial.

"The evidence for action keeps piling up. We must do much more to make sure the pounds don't keep piling on."

Richard Lochhead MSP, co-convener of the cross-parliamentary group on food, said: "The Scottish Government has pledged to take forward a series of bold measures to tackle obesity, including restricting multi-buy promotions on junk food.

"As World Cancer Day approaches, we need to see everyone unite behind these ambitious and world-leading plans.

"This is Scotland's chance to tip the scales in favour of a healthier future."

The YouGov poll surveyed 1037 Scottish adults in early December.

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