UK's largest brands team with Government for £200m anti-obesity drive

LONDON - The UK's biggest food and beverage, retail, media, advertising, fitness and healthcare companies have teamed up with the government to launch a £200m initiative aimed at tackling obesity.

Britvic, Cadbury, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Kellogg's, Kraft, Mars, Nestlé and are among the food brands that have signed up. The other companies involved are Tesco, AOL UK, BSkyB, Channel 4, AMV BBDO, CBI, Discovery Networks UK, Fitness Industry Association, five, ITV, OMD, Outdoor Advertising Association, Profero, PruHealth, RadioCentre, Viacom and Virgin Media Television.

 Spearheaded by the Advertising Association it will aim to encourage healthy diets and physical activity in the run up to the London 2012 Olympics and make a significant and measurable contribution to fighting obesity in the UK.

 It is the first time the food, drink, broadcasting and advertising industries have worked with the Government to promote healthier lifestyles and those involved will integrate campaign messages into marketing activities and use broadcast media to amplify the campaign theme.

The industry contribution will be worth in excess of £200 million over the four years and will be in addition to the government's own £75 million marketing campaign.

Baroness Peta Buscombe, Chief Executive of the Advertising Association, said: ‘Business is part of the solution to tackling obesity in the UK. By harnessing the immense talents in this country in advertising, marketing and media, we believe we can make a real difference, bringing about real change.'

Plans for a series of high profile, industry co-ordinated public events to be held across the UK are also in development, with activity set to run over the next four years through to the London 2012 Olympics.

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