Key Points:

The Herald asks: How will your party fight obesity?

Damien O'Connor, Labour, Associate Health Minister:

Through the Healthy Eating Healthy Action programme, the Government remains committed to educating people on making healthy food choices and the importance of regular exercise to maintain a healthy, balanced lifestyle. Programmes such as Fruit in Schools and Mission On will continue to encourage our children to think and act in ways that keep them fit and healthy. The Government is also reviewing its strategy to ensure activity is promoted to people of all ages.


Tony Ryall, National Party health spokesman:

Changing attitudes towards food and exercise require information and support rather than top-down government instruction. Research says one in five children aged between 5 an 10 had no physical education class at school and we will try to provide more opportunities for activities. We will work with business to provide consumers with more information and choice and change the proposed law that would allow the Government to tell parents what to put in kids' lunchboxes.

Sue Kedgley, Green Party health spokeswoman:

We would take many steps - everything from taking ads for unhealthy food off television before 8.30 at night, to traffic-light labelling so consumers can see at a glance what foods are high in sugar, for example, to not allowing vending machines selling fizzy drinks at schools.

We want gardening and cooking introduced at primary school, and activity such as walking buses, cycling, pedestrian-friendly cities to be encouraged much more.