Junk food giants ‘fuel lifestyle diseases in SA, even targeting ...


Junk food giants ‘fuel lifestyle diseases in SA, even targeting babies’

Food corporates set their sights on ‘new markets’ as global north increasingly spurns their offerings

Senior science reporter

Multinational companies are aggressively marketing ultra-processed foods in SA and they’re making us sick.

Prof Karen Hofman, of Johannesburg’s Wits University, sounded the alarm in the British Medical Journal (https://www.bmj.com/content/369/bmj.m2391.abstract) with researchers from other countries: non-communicable diseases such as type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure are being fuelled by ultra-processed foods and an urgent response is needed.

“SA is especially vulnerable because multinational companies have shifted their sales of unhealthy food and beverages from the global north to their new ‘growth markets’ in Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and India, for example,” Hofman told Times Select. This is because consumers in the north are increasingly aware of how these products harm their health and are shunning them...

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