New kilojoule labelling scheme to encourage healthier eating

New kilojoule labelling scheme to encourage healthier eating

The kilojoule labelling scheme is part of a multi-strategy approach to encourage healthy eating and reduce the impact of obesity in Victoria.

Arming consumers with information about the energy content of food and drinks will help them make more informed, healthier decisions when eating out and taking food away to eat at home or on the go.

The new laws require large chain food outlets and supermarkets to display the kilojoule content of un-packaged, ready-to-eat food and drinks on menus, food tags and online menus, helping consumers to make more informed choices.

On 1 May 2018 Victoria’s Food Amendment (Kilojoule Labelling Scheme and Other Matters) Act 2017 came into effect. The scheme applies to large chain food businesses – with 20 or more outlets in Victoria or 50 or more outlets nationally and at least one in Victoria – and large chain supermarkets. The scheme will be enforced by local councils and the Department of Health and Human Services.

A consumer education campaign, Kilojoules on the Menu – Check before you choose, has accompanied the new legislation.

The average daily adult energy intake is 8,700 kJ, but a single take-away meal could contain 5000 kilojoules. We know the average Australian eats out more than four times a week and without knowing the energy content of food, many people are eating far too many kilojoules without realising it.

With more information about kilojoule content and daily intake, Victorians can build healthy food habits and live longer, healthier lives.

Find out more about the consumer campaign at the Better Health Channel website.

For more information, businesses can visit the department’s website or contact the department’s Food Safety Unit 1300 364 352 or email Food Safety.

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