Boris Johnson backs capital’s anti-obesity drive

15:29 18 November 2012

There are an estimated 8,273 fast-food takeaway shops in London. File picture: Alistair Wilson/PA Wire

There are an estimated 8,273 fast-food takeaway shops in London. File picture: Alistair Wilson/PA Wire

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Boris Johnson has backed a guide calling on London’s local authorities to boost healthy eating and tackle the increasing number of takeaways.

The London Mayor is supporting the Takeaways Toolkit, guidance published by the London Food Board in partnership with the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.

The guide will be issued to London councils this week and includes a raft of suggestions for encouraging healthy eating, from restricting takeaway sites with tighter planning guidelines to introducing healthy “grab and go” options in schools.

Twenty of the capital’s boroughs have a concentration of fast-food outlets that is well above the national average.

Mr Johnson said: “As a city, as a nation, we are getting fatter. Just over a third of 10 and 11-year-olds are overweight or obese, with numbers rising all the time, contributing to a problem that costs the NHS as much as £4 billion annually.

“We enjoy fast-food, whilst takeaway businesses contribute to local economies.

“This guide shows how councils can manage the proliferation of takeaways across the capital, but also how by working with businesses as well as schools, we can all be served up much healthier tucker.”

There are an estimated 8,273 fast-food takeaway shops in London, one for every 1,000 Londoners.

Seven of the 10 London boroughs with the highest concentration of fast-food takeaways are also in the top 10 for deprivation, according to analysis by Greater London Authority.

The new guidelines provide local authorities with a variety of ideas to help tackle that problem.

One suggestion is for councils to work directly with takeaway owners to cut saturated fats, salt and sugar in their cooking and introduce low-fat foods to the menu.

For example, one London takeaway dramatically cut levels of saturated fat on chips after switching from palm oil to rapeseed oil on the advice of an environment health officer.

Local authorities are similarly advised on how to use planning guidelines to restrict where and when takeaways set up, as well as how to use environmental and health regulations and laws around street trading.

Mr Johnson’s new push to tackle London’s obesity problem follows measures implemented across the Atlantic by New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, who has banned extra large cups of sugary drinks.

In June, Mr Johnson responded to Mr Bloomberg’s idea by writing that “where New York leads, London is not far behind”.

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
2 3 4 5 6

Latest London politics news

Monday, November 30, 2015
The National Health Singers in action outside St Paul's Cathedral on Saturday (Picture: Dr Georgina Wood)

Ahead of the junior doctor strike on December 1, a choir of talented medics stood in Tube stations and outside London landmarks ‘singing for survival’ with their new song to the NHS, ‘Yours’.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015
(Image: Stop the War Coalition)

As MPs prepare for tomorrow’s vote on air strikes in Syria, the Stop the War Coalition has called for a rally in Parliament Square tonight against British military involvement in the wartorn region.

Friday, November 27, 2015
Thousands will march for ambitious action on the climate crisis by governments internationally (Picture: PeoplesMarch)

The People’s March for Climate, Justice and Jobs will pass through central London on Sunday November 29 with more than 7,000 people from all around the UK. Here is a guide to the march - why it’s happening, where to go and what will be going on.

Friday, November 27, 2015
The Chief Inspector of Hospitals has recommended the London Ambulance Service NHS Trust is placed into special measures (Picture: PA Images)

Health watchdog CQC has said the London Ambulance Service (LAS) NHS Trust should be placed into special measures as it is ‘performing poorly’ and has been rated ‘inadequate’.

Thursday, November 26, 2015
Plane Stupid protesters blocked the tunnel leading into Heathrow Airport (Picture: Plane Stupid)

Plane Stupid climate change activists have blocked the inbound tunnel to Heathrow in a protest against airport expansion.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015
Aerial view of proposed Rotherhithe Bridge [image: reForm Architects]

Plans to build a new bridge across the Thames between Canary Wharf and Rotherhithe on either side have reached completion in a new feasibility study.

The proposed ‘Rotherhithe Bridge’ would have the longest bascule span in the world, at 600ft (184m), for use by pedestrians and cyclists.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...


Win a beautiful monochrome tunic dress with Great British Life!

Great British Life is offering a beautiful monochrome silk tunic dress worth £179 to one lucky reader

Read more
Nike Trainers

Nike’s motto is ‘to bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world.’ With this in mind it’s no surprise why Nike is the preferred training gear for most A-list athletes. Get an extra boost in your run or height in your jump with £500 to spend on Nike trainers.

Read more

Latest Tech News