16 Jul 2015

Fat tax could stop obsesity in children

9:27 am on 16 July 2015

The Secretariat of the Pacific Community says a junk food tax has to be considered to prevent obesity in children.

Figures from the World Health Organisation show nine out of the ten most obese countries in the world are in the Pacific with three out of four deaths reported in the Pacific due to non communicable diseases.

The SPC head, Colin Tukuitonga, says children often do not have a say in what they eat and all methods need to be looked at to stop obesity in its tracks.

"It's clear to us that just educating communities and offering posters and t-shirts and so on isn't going to do it and we need to have both educational resources as well measures such as a tax on unhealthy items."

Colin Tukuitonga says the administrative ability of various nations also needs to be examined but taxes introduced on soft drinks in other parts of the world have yielded positive results.

Secretariat of the Pacific Community building

Secretariat of the Pacific Community building Photo: RNZ

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs