Pressure mounts on 'junk-food' ads

The Government has threatened to impose even tougher rules on non-broadcast ads for "junk foods" and soft drinks aimed at children.

Only three weeks after a new Committee of Advertising Practice code on press and posters was announced, ministers said they may bring them into line with Ofcom's rules for TV ads. The Department of Health said it would prefer "consistent" rules across all media and urged advertisers to obey the spirit and the letter of the new rules. It said the two regimes had "the potential to create confusion and difficulties for advertisers, regulators and the public".

It was responding to a letter about the new rules for non-broadcast by an alliance of ten pressure groups. "CAP has produced a revised code that repackages old rules as new and fails to deal with the key issue of the volume of food advertising," it said. "We are concerned at the lack of progress being made on those non-broadcast areas, for which CAP does not have responsibility."

The Food and Drink Federation said it was "staggered" the new code was being attacked at the outset.

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