Obesity is a problem that came hand-inhand with the world of fast food and junk food! The children of today are easily attracted to the varieties of junk food that are very widely available and all the innovative marketing that goes into these products capture their attention firmly! Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) - the premium regulatory body for all marketed food products has now come up with a much vaunted decision. This decision by the FSSAI now prohibits the sale of any junk food in schools and 50 metres in the surrounding vicinity and also prohibits advertising for the same in this region. This decision has been arrived at to promote safe and wholesome food for children.

A statement by the FSSAI states that the Food Safety and Standards (Safe food and healthy diets for School Children) Regulations,  2020, has been notified in this regard, after taking into consideration the comments of all the stakeholders. The FSSAI also states, "sufficient transition time would be given to all the stakeholders before enforcing these regulations." It further adds that the State Food Authorities/Department would be notified to formulate safe and balanced diets for children in schools, following the guidelines mentioned in these new regulations.

The latest regulations state, "Foods which are referred to as food products high in saturated fat or trans-fat or added sugar or sodium (HFSS) cannot be sold to school children in school canteens/mess premises/hostel kitchens or in an area within fifty meters from the school gate in any direction." Further, Food Business Operators (FBOs) manufacturing HFSS foods are barred from advertising or marketing of their products to children in school premises or 50 meters from the school direction in all directions, in any means or forms. The school authorities have also been directed to put up a prominent board displaying that these activities are barred in English or any local Indian language. Schools have also been advised to convert their campuses into 'Eat Right Campus' to help develop healthy eating habits among children.