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Table 4 Requirements for an effective Healthy Food Partnership

From: Designing a Healthy Food Partnership: lessons from the Australian Food and Health Dialogue

Government leadership and funding
 - Renewed and unambiguous public commitment from ministerial level, supported by necessary funding
 - Credible expectation of implementing responsive regulatory approach where sufficient progress not demonstrated
 - Charismatic ministerial representative to act as facilitative leader/’honest broker’, present at all meetings, publicly committed to outcomes, able to make ‘fair calls’ as required
Clear targets and timelines
 - Focus on changing food environment, not only education or increasing physical activity
 - National targets explicitly aligned to Australia’s commitments to WHO global NCD targets
 - Food reformulation targets explicitly aligned with national targets for reducing dietary risks
 - Incorporate existing Dialogue work, accelerate reformulation activity in additional food categories, nutrients and sectors including Quick Service Restaurants (‘fast food’)
 - Feasibility determined by independent technical experts e.g. CSIRO, not industry players
 - Consider adopting existing targets developed for other jurisdictions (e.g. UK)
 - Complement existing Health Star Rating System
 - Plan to enshrine in Food Standards Code as part of responsive regulatory approach
Control for conflict of interest
 - Government to set clear Terms of Reference for involvement of different stakeholders, ensuring industry not involved in setting policy objectives and agenda
 - Agreed, explicit governance arrangements that focus on tripartite collaboration while allowing for exercise of government authority when necessary.
 - Open meetings with publically available minutes
 - ‘Co-chair’ approach to working groups, ensuring equal representation of perspectives and that conflicting profit motives of industry don’t derail collaborative efforts towards the Partnership’s public health objectives
 - Australian Competition and Consumer Commission appointed as independent observer
Independent monitoring and evaluation
 - Independently conducted regular public reporting of progress towards agreed goals and targets
 - Information available on individual company compliance with voluntary commitments
 - Periodic review of Partnership’s governance arrangements in light of performance
 - Publicise success, highlight and act upon failure - public communication by government, ‘shadow reporting’ by consumer and public health groups, recognition scheme administered by trusted independent group