Statement: Regulation of advertising of less healthy food and drink
- Start: 21 February 2023
- Status: Statement published
- End: 21 April 2023
Statement published 10 July 2023
Between 21 February and 21 April 2023, Ofcom consulted on proposals for implementing new statutory restrictions on advertising and sponsorship for less healthy food and drink products.
The Health and Care Act – which received Royal Assent on 28 April 2022 -- amended the Communications Act 2003 to introduce new restrictions on advertising and sponsorship for certain food and drink products that are high in fat, salt or sugar (HFSS). These new restrictions apply to advertising on Ofcom-regulated TV and on-demand programme services (ODPS) and also online.
- prohibit TV services from including advertising and sponsorship for less healthy food and drink products between 5.30am and 9pm;
- prohibit ODPS from including advertising and sponsorship for less healthy food and drink products between 5.30am and 9pm; and
- prohibit paid-for advertisements for less healthy food and drink products that are aimed at UK users from being placed online at any time.
These restrictions take effect from 1 October 2025.
Ofcom is the statutory regulator with responsibility for advertising on TV and ODPS. Our consultation proposed to:
- designate the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) as a co-regulator for the new prohibition on advertising for less healthy food and drink products in paid-for online space; and
- amend the Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practice (BCAP) Code and the Broadcasting Code to reflect the new restrictions that apply to advertising and sponsorship on TV.
This statement summarises the consultation responses and sets out our conclusions.
|Advertising Association (PDF File, 173.6 KB)||Organisation|
|Bite Back 2030 (PDF File, 151.7 KB)||Organisation|
|British Heart Foundation (PDF File, 236.6 KB)||Organisation|
|British Retail Consortium (PDF File, 120.6 KB)||Organisation|
|Coca-Cola GB (PDF File, 178.2 KB)||Organisation|