Thousands of takeaways and chippies at risk in Govt crackdown on junk food

Thousands of beloved chippies and takeaways are under threat as the government launch a crackdown on junk food.

Business owners fear a new advertising ban will be a killer blow for their sales on top of losses they suffered during the Covid pandemic.

Ministers have unveiled plans to ban TV ads for unhealthy food before the 9pm watershed.

Now they want to go further and outlaw adverts for high fat, sugar and salt products.

Takeaway bosses are alarmed and have said it could be the death knell for thousands of small businesses.

Andrew Crooks, of the British Takeaway Campaign, warned it would “punitively punish” thousands of small, independent eateries already reeling from the effects of the coronavirus crisis.

The government says it wants to protect children online and believes stricter rules could lead to 120,000 fewer obese and overweight kids in Britain, writes The Sun.

But chippy owners claim many local outlets advertise on social media and rely on it for people playing orders during the pandemic.

Mr Crooks, who owns a fish and chip shop, urges for independent takeaways, kebab shops and curry houses with fewer than five outlets to be exempt.

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He said: “These local businesses do not have multi-million pound TV marketing campaigns. For them, social media is their shop window, especially when we’re in and out of lockdown.

“Removing their ability to advertise robs them of a crucial way to reach customers, when nobody knows what the future holds and takeaways continue to have a vital role in keeping the nation fed.”

There are around 10,500 chippies, 8,500 curry houses and 20,000 kebab shops in the UK.

Most are privately run, whereas some burger and fried chicken places are run by larger chains.

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In their letter, the takeaway bosses say they have responded to the government’s health drive and that 65 per cent of outlets now offer low-fat options and 59 per cent provide products that are lower in salt.

They write: “Over the last eight months, takeaway owners and their employees have stepped up and played a crucial role in keeping the nation fed during this pandemic.

"Many more have done their bit, and more, to support thousands of frontline workers, often out of their own pocket.

“Takeaways, along with thousands of pubs, cafes and restaurants, have adapted overnight to keep feeding their communities, be it through redesigning their shops to be COVID secure, establishing measures to keep staff safe or offering delivery services for the very first time.”

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