UKHospitality has responded to Food Standards Scotland’s consultation on proposals to improve the out of home environment, arguing against the introduction of inflexible and ineffective legislation.
UKH’s submission highlights previous voluntary efforts that have had a positive effect.
Willie Macleod, UKHospitality Executive Director for Scotland said: “The hospitality and out of home food service sectors are so diverse and varied that any mandatory controls are likely to be impractical and ineffective. Regulation would have to be reduced to the lowest level in order to be deliverable across so many different businesses.
“It is always preferable where possible to apply a voluntary approach. Hospitality businesses, if properly motivated and supported, will be better placed to effectively promote healthier attitudes towards food and drink. Evidence shows that a gradual, voluntary approach to reformulation can be successful, as shown by recent efforts to reduce salt in manufacturing, retail and food service.
“Addressing obesity is a complex issue which demands policy action to support active lifestyles, public education about food, healthy diet and nutrition and food consumption in, as well as out of the home.
“Efforts to shape, manage and execute an out of home nutrition programme should be undertaken with the full involvement of the hospitality sector. These businesses are best placed to understand the challenges we face and the opportunities for success. A voluntary scheme, with close cooperation with UKH, its members and the wider sector is the best approach to deliver the most effective and efficient out of home strategy.”