Calls for Dutch sugar tax amid concerns for obesity in the Netherlands

Calls for Dutch sugar tax amid concerns for obesity in the Netherlands

Various health foundations across the Netherlands together with Unicef and the municipality of Amsterdam have called for the next government to introduce a sugar tax in order to battle growing levels of obesity among young people. 

Calls for Dutch government to take action against unhealthy foods

The Diabetes Fund, Heart Foundation, Kidney Foundation, and Stomach, Liver and Bowel Foundation are calling for the Dutch government to limit the national consumption of unhealthy additives such as sugar, salt, and fat. 

Among other things, the foundations are asking the next cabinet to introduce a sugar tax and to ban advertising for unhealthy foods marketed at children. They feel the 2018 National Prevention Agreement - aimed at tackling smoking, obesity, and alcohol consumption in the Netherlands - has not done enough to improve the general health of the public: “The ambitions were good, but the measures too weak,” says Tom Oostrom, director of the Kidney Foundation. 

Growing concerns about obesity in the Netherlands

The foundations aim to significantly reduce the consumption of unhealthy foods in the Netherlands, specifically targeting younger generations in the hopes this will avoid future illness. 

Oostrom highlights the fact that if nothing is done now, almost two-thirds of the Dutch population will be overweight by 2040, equalling over nine million people, and that this will lead to unprecedented stress on the Dutch healthcare system: “To tackle this problem, we want a society in which healthy eating and drinking is the standard. Starting with the youth,” he says.

Victoria Séveno


Victoria Séveno

Victoria grew up in Amsterdam, before moving to the UK to study English and Related Literature at the University of York and completing her NCTJ course at the Press Association...

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