Children’s channels will not broadcast junk food advertisements, the government said in Lok Sabha. Responding to a question, the government said industry bodies have voluntarily decided not to show food and beverage advertisements concerning children.
Chandrakant Khaire (Shiv Sena) had asked about a study “according to which the habit of eating more junk food is increasing among people by watching advertisements on television” and if the government wanted to ban advertisements for junk food and soft drinks.
I&B Minister Smriti Irani said the health ministry has stated that an expert group had recommended “Ban on foods with high fat, sugar and salt advertising on children’s channels or during children’s shows”. FSSAI, the food standards authority, had observed that the food industry “could be asked to voluntarily desist from advertising HFSS foods on children’s channels”. Industry bodies like Food and Beverage Alliance of India “have already decided to voluntarily restrict food and beverage advertisements concerning children,” Irani said. Nine major food business operators have joined the campaign, she said.