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
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest London politics news

Tuesday, July 28, 2015
Lord Sewel resigns from the House of Lords (Picture: PA Images)

Lord Sewel has quit the House of Lords after video footage emerged of him allegedly taking cocaine with two prostitutes in his London flat, even snorting a line off one woman’s breasts.

Friday, July 24, 2015
Commons Speaker John Bercow spent nearly £400 on a chauffeur-driven journey to speak about restoring reputation after the expenses scandal (Picture: PA Images)

Commons Speaker John Bercow took a chauffeur-driven car to a conference 0.7 miles from Parliament which cost the taxpayer a staggering £172.

Thursday, July 23, 2015
Fleet Primary School. Picture: Nigel Sutton

A counter-terrorism agency has intervened at a Hampstead primary school where a child was deemed at risk of being drawn into Islamic extremism.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015
New late-night club licences will be harder to get under Hackney Council's plans (Picture: Dalston Superstore)

Plans by Hackney Council to curtail late night licences in the popular clubbing spots of Shoreditch and Dalston will threaten the area’s “star power”, according to campaigners fighting the proposals.

Monday, June 29, 2015
Protesters at an earlier anti-austerity demo in Berlin in March (Photo: Adam Berry/Getty Images)

Owen Jones, Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn and Green MP Caroline Lucas are all at a rally in Trafalgar Square to show solidarity with Greece this evening.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015
Police clashed with disabled protesters in the lobby of the House of Commons (Photo: Debbie Jolly/PA Wire)

Police have been accused of “heavy handed tactics” as they blocked disabled protesters, many in wheelchairs, from entering the House of Commons chamber during Prime Minister’s Questions today.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Take in the stunning sites of London from the summit of the O2!

Up at The O2 has teamed up with London24 to give one lucky reader the chance to experience urban mountaineering this summer with an exhilarating 90-minute climb across the roof of one of London’s most iconic landmarks.

Read more
Terrific tea, creamy cakes and splendid sandwiches at Mews of Mayfair.

Celebrate a truly quintessentially British tradition with the chance of winning a luxurious Afternoon Tea for two people at Mews of Mayfair, complete with a glass of Veuve Clicquot champagne.

Read more
Get up close and personal to this global phenomenon!

Following a sell-out 2014 run, the global phenomenon that is Michael Flatley’s Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games is back in London, running at the Dominion Theatre in the heart of the West End until 5th September 2015.

Read more