Labour pledges packaging legislation changes in health drive

A future Labour government would introduce plain cigarette packaging and bring in clearer nutritional information on food labels in a bid to improve the nation’s health, according to reports.

Shadow health secretary Andy Burnham is expected to make the pledges in a speech later today, the BBC says.

The coalition Government has made steps towards introducing plain cigarette packaging, with public health minister Jane Ellison saying last year that she was “minded” to introduce regulations to standardise packaging.

The Department of Health has also released designs for how plain cigarette packaging might look in the UK. The designs use Helvetica and a “drab brown” colour palette.

With regards to food labelling, a consistent “traffic light” system for providing nutritional information was rolled out in 2013, following several years’ of development.

The system combines red, amber and green colour-coding and nutritional information to show how much fat, saturated fat, salt, sugar and calories are in foods.

Burnham has pledged to introduce simpler labelling and told the BBC: “At the moment you need a chemistry degree to read a cereal packet.”

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