For Chile to advance towards better health and less obesity, more accountability is needed over the enforcement of existing rules. We also need to do more: establish a “green” card that would allow Chile’s vulnerable populations access to healthy food; increase physical activity as a requirement in our schools; and raise taxes on harmful products that bear the warning labels.
The greatest pandemic humanity is facing isn’t Covid, it’s obesity. That condition kills around 41 million people annually – 112,000 people a day – through cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes, and dementia. Forty thousand of those cases are completely avoidable, since they involve young people. In contrast, Covid caused a total of 8 million deaths over a two-year period. In addition, obesity causes years lost in terms of healthy lives, increases the need for hospital beds, and results in greater public health expenses.
Less than a week is left for the expiration of the extension requested by large companies to comply with the law on front labeling of food and beverages, which seeks to warn the population on food packaging of excessive components that may be harmful to health, such as sugars, sodium and saturated fats, among others. The regulation was approved in October 2021 and most companies requested extensions to comply, which expire on February 16.
The National Association of Industrialists of Colombia (ANDI in Spanish) warned that the Front End Labeling Law will impact consumers’ pockets, due to the costs that some companies will have to assume to comply with the new regulation. See more personal finance news
The president of ANDI’s Food Industry Chamber, Camilo Montes, explained that companies have about six months to change their current packaging and comply with the regulations established by the Ministry of Health in Resolution 810.
March 14 will be the 90th day since the enactment of the Law on Front-of-Food Labeling and, therefore, the deadline to regulate and apply the new standard will expire. Until then, companies are seeking to establish some specifications.
In this regard, the content of the regulation is already defined in the text approved by Congress, some points will be defined in the regulation and the companies want to be given more time to adapt packaging, differentiate nutrients and exclude some products.