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The Times of London reports that starting today, all advertisements for food and beverages in France must include a health warning – one of four messages developed by the government – designed to help fight the nation’s obesity crisis. According to the story, “Manufacturers must display one of four messages on broadcast commercials and print and internet adverts or pay a fine of 1.5 per cent of their total advertising budget to a national health fund.”

The mandated messages include:

• “For your health avoid eating food with too much fat, too much sugar, too much salt.”
• “For your health avoid snacking between meals.”
• “For your health eat at least five fruits and vegetables a day.”
• “For your health undertake regular physical activity.”

The Times writes, “With its tradition of good food and regular eating habits, France suffers less from obesity than any other European nation except Norway, according to EU statistics. However the authorities have been alarmed by a steep rise in weight in recent years.”

Still, despite the efforts, consumer groups say the government isn’t doing enough – and have called for a complete ban on all food and beverage advertising to children.
KC's View:
Maybe this is just us, but we think that the French government ought to worry more about smoking than obesity. The obesity rate may be lower than most places, but we suspect that the lung cancer rate is high.