Food-EPI NZ 2017

Benchmarking New Zealand Food Environment Policies COMPARED TO BEST PRACTICE

The Healthy Food Environment Policy Index (Food-EPI) 2017 was conducted with a group of 71 NZ independent and Government experts in April-May 2017 to evaluate progress by the Government on implementing policies to increase the healthiness of food environments to reduce obesity and diet-related chronic diseases since 2014.

Please find the executive summary and full report here below:

Executive Summary 18 July 2017 CW04.pdf
Food Environment report 18 July 2017 CW01.pdf

The Government is performing well, at the level of international best practice, in preventing unhealthy foods carrying health claims, providing nutrition information panels on packaged foods, transparency in policy development processes, providing access to information for the public and monitoring prevalence of chronic diseases and their risk factors and inequalities.

Experts recognized progress since 2014 for implementation of the Health Star Ratings, initiating systems-based approaches with communities, developing and implementing the Healthy Food and Drink Policy in the public sector and improving platforms for interaction between Government and other sectors and across Government.

There are however major implementation gaps with about 70% of the recommended policies and one third of the infrastructure support systems rated as ‘low’ or ‘very little, if any’ implementation.

Out of 53 actions identified to improve the healthiness of NZ food environments, the Expert Panel prioritized 9 actions for immediate action. The Government is strongly urged to act on these recommendations to improve the diets of New Zealanders, especially for children, and to reduce the burgeoning health care costs of obesity and unhealthy diets.

Online appendices, including full evidence document and full list of recommended actions can be found here below: