By Sally Fenn
NHS England has asked all hospital retailers to reduce their sales of sugary drinks to 10 per cent (or less) of total drinks sales by the end of the year. If retailers refuse, they face an outright ban on their sale of sugary drinks after March 2018.
The target extends to all hot and cold sugary drinks, pre-packaged bottles and cans, including fruit juices with added sugar, sold in hospital cafes, shops and vending machines. Sales of sugary drinks in hospital settings can be as high as 35% of total drinks sales.
Retailers will be asked to provide quarterly updates on monthly drinks sales figures to ensure that they are meeting the required target.
The NHS is Europe’s largest employer, with over 1.3 million staff, of whom nearly 700,000 are estimated to be overweight or obese.
More money is currently spent each year on the treatment of obesity and diabetes than on the police, fire service and judicial system combined.
Read about the Healthy Hospital Food league table here.