Tesco chairman criticises HFSS policy delay

Tesco chairman John Allan has criticised Boris Johnson and his government for reversing upcoming HFSS policy.

The Big 4 grocer’s chairman who asserted his opinion wasn’t the company’s official stance, condemned last month’s delay on rules banning multi-buy deals for high in fat salt and sugar products.

“Unlike the government, you know, whose view is that having an idea and sticking with it for more than a week constitutes real achievement, we don’t operate that way,” Allan said.

“We’ve got these long term commitments which we’re absolutely committed to deliver.”

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Allan also shared that Tesco CEO Ken Murphy had reached out to Downing Street to warn against delaying HFSS policy as obesity rates continue to impact the nation’s health.

“Ken personally told the prime minister’s chief of staff more or less on the day that it was announced that we thought this was a really bad move on the part of the government,” Allan told shareholders at the Tesco’s annual meeting.

Last month, Tesco said it was maintain its original plan to remove volume price promotions on HFSS products by October 2022.

The government’s decision to delay said policy to October 2023 comes amid cost of living concerns with the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) officials citing the “unprecedented” squeeze on living standards.

Similarly, grocers such as Morrisons have also continued to offer HFSS multi-buy deals in a bid to help customers during inflationary pressures.

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