Scotland 'eats 4.3m chocolate bars a day' warns Cancer Research UK
Charity warning over impact of price promotions on Scotland's obesity rate
Obesity - PA
Scotland consumes sugary junk food equivalent of 4.3m chocolate bars a day, Cancer Research UK has warned.
Around 110 tonnes of sugary products are purchased every day through price promotions in stores, the analysis of Food Standards Scotland research showed.
The charity released the figures as part of its campaign for stricter controls on retailers for confectionery and soft drinks to tackle what it calls Scotland's "obesity epidemic".
Scotland has one of the highest obesity rates in Europe, with two thirds of adults overweight or obese. The condition is linked to 13 types of cancer as well as a number of other diseases.
CRUK has called for a ban on promotions such as multibuy deals, which account for 40 per cent of all consumer expenditure.
The Scottish Government said it was already engaging with retailers ahead of its long-awaited obesity and diet strategy.
CRUK's cancer prevention expert Professor Linda Bauld, who is based at the University of Stirling, said: “When it publishes its obesity strategy, the Scottish Government has a once in a generation opportunity to introduce measures that will have a profound impact on our lives.
“We know that less healthy foods and drinks are more likely to be bought on promotion than healthier foods and anyone who regularly navigates the aisles knows how hard offers on junk food are to resist.
“And with studies showing the most deprived in our society are more often obese and less likely to get their five-a-day of fruit and vegetables, much more needs to be done to make healthy options affordable instead.”
The call was backed by Obesity Action Scotland, a group of clinicians who campaign on the subject.
A spokeswoman said the strategy should also include restrictions on sponsorship and portion sizes and support ongoing reformulation of recipes to include less sugar.
"These are measures that, if implemented as a programme are most likely to reduce the level of obesity in our country. Obesity is a limiting condition that disables a large proportion and raises the risk of cancer and a range of other serious conditions," she said.
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