Wednesday, 17 February 2021

Questions (788, 789)

Carol Nolan

Question:

788. Deputy Carol Nolan asked the Minister for Health the plans in place under the obesity policy implementation oversight group to progress action 1.8 of the obesity policy and action plan; if a timeline will be developed for progressing same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8393/21]

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Carol Nolan

Question:

789. Deputy Carol Nolan asked the Minister for Health the evidence aside from that on the impact of the sugar sweetened tax that has been or will be reviewed on the effectiveness on the implementation for fiscal measures on HFSS products to reduce their consumption; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8394/21]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Health)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 788 and 789 together.

The Sugar-Sweetened Drinks Tax was introduced on 1 May 2018. This followed a comprehensive preparation process including the publication of an internal working paper to inform consideration of a sugar sweetened drinks levy from a health perspective, and an extensive consultation process.

Any further introduction of fiscal measures in relation to foods high in fat, sugar and salt, or indeed to encourage healthy eating and lifestyles more broadly, will likewise require a strong evidence base and preparation process. The evaluation currently underway of the Sugar-Sweetened Drinks Tax will also inform this process, in terms of what may be learned about the efficacy of the tax and the applicability of similar measures to other food products.

The Obesity Policy and Action Plan is due to be reviewed in 2021, to refresh the Plan for the remaining years of its lifetime, and the issue of the introduction of additional evidence-based fiscal measures of this nature will be further considered as part of this process.