Normal Service Resumes: Junk Food Research
In 2018, Mayor Khan banned so-called “junk food” adverts from anywhere on the Transport for London network. A lot of people thought it was a good idea, but the policy has run into 3 problems:
- It didn’t ban junk food adverts. McDonald’s have no trouble working around the rules.
- It did ban some normal food, eg the Wimbledon classic strawberries and cream.
- It didn’t work. Childhood obesity in London has risen faster than anywhere else in the country
This week, the Mayor resorted to junk science to pretend his policy is still working. Back in March my colleague Emma Best AM wrote a report
revealing her study of the policy. This week, health economist Chris Snowdon wrote a scathing analysis
of the policy and the latest dubious research behind it.
As Chris points out: “The authors of the study didn’t do anything as gauche as count the number of obese people to arrive at this finding. No people were studied in the study. Their research, such as it is, is wholly based on theoretical modelling,”
If you look at actual people not theoretical modelling, childhood obesity in London has risen faster than anywhere in the country and we have now overtaken the West Midlands to have the biggest childhood obesity problem in the country.
If childhood obesity is a problem worth tackling, it’s worth tackling it honestly. It’s no use the Mayor clinging to a failed policy because he’s too stubborn to admit he’s wrong.
City Hall Visit
A few people have been in touch about visiting City Hall, as I mentioned last week
. I’m looking to organise a tour in September so please get in touch if you’d like to join, you can reply to this email or email me directly: Neil.Garratt@London.gov.uk
That’s it for this week. Thank you for subscribing to my weekly City Hall Diary, please do share this email with anyone you think might be interested. If this has been forwarded to you, you can subscribe yourself
Neil Garratt AM
London Assembly Member for Croydon & Sutton
City Hall, Kamal Chunchie Way, London, E16 1ZE
PS: Inside City Hall podcast
If you listen to podcasts (like online radio shows) I co-host Inside City Hall
with Nick Rogers. We discuss what’s happening in City Hall, what the Mayor is up to, and what’s going on across London. Nick is the Conservative Assembly Member for Hounslow, Kingston, and Richmond.
You can listen on Spotify
, on Apple Podcasts
, or anywhere you get your podcasts including smart a speaker. Just search for “Inside City Hall”.