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SA Government urged to crack down on junk food advertising to children

1 May 2023

The SA Greens are urging the State Government to back a Private Members Bill to ban junk food advertising near schools and on bus stops and railway stations, as new research reveals that almost 80 per cent of food and drink advertisements children see on their way to school are about junk food.

The study by the Cancer Council SA revealed that of the 253 advertisements related to food or drink on public transport assets within 500 metres of schools, almost 80 per cent were promoting junk food.

“Junk food has a terrible impact on community health. Junk food advertisers shouldn’t be able to spruik their wares on public property. Promoting this food to school children is particularly dangerous. The Cancer Council’s study further strengthens the case for Government action,” said Greens Health Spokesperson, Robert Simms MLC.

“Given the role of junk food in obesity and in turn chronic disease, it is totally inappropriate for these products to be promoted on publicly owned property and buildings. While other stated have sought to restrict advertising of this nature on public buildings, South Australia is lagging behind.”

“In September last year, I introduced a Private Members Bill to ban junk food advertising within 500 metres of SA schools, on bus stops and railway stations and other public property. With the Government’s support, we could pass this bill in the parliament and finally crack down on junk food advertising to SA children.”

“I know that many South Australian parents would welcome restrictions being placed on junk food advertising as at the moment those parents who are wanting to encourage healthy choices are being pitched in a David and Goliath fight with big corporations trying to promote products to their kids.”

Queensland, the ACT and WA have all taken steps to restrict or ban junk food advertising on government property.