Southwark Council will ban ‘junk food’ and alcohol ads on its advertising spaces from next month.
From July 1, any ads promoting food said to be high in fat, salt or sugar will be barred for new advertising contracts with the local authority, as well as alcoholic drinks.
The ban covers all council controlled ad spaces, including hoarding boards, electronic displays and smart benches.
The move comes on the back of a decision by Transport for London to ban ‘junk food’ ads from its estate in February.
In a report discussed by Cabinet on Tuesday, it is stated that the financial implications cannot be calculated at this stage, although there was a “risk” that the policy would reduce ads income for the town hall. However the risk would be monitored by officers, it added.
Cllr Evelyn Akoto, who holds the public health portfolio on the Cabinet, said: “It is difficult to deny the link between increased fast food advertising and childhood obesity, greater exposure to the advertising of unhealthy foods has been shown to increase the consumption of these foods.
“I want to reduce unhealthy food advertising and at the time encourage children and young people, families and carers to buy healthier options as well as cook more healthily.”
Southwark has among the highest levels of childhood obesity in England, with almost 40 per cent of 10-11 year olds in the borough being overweight or obese.