Junk food dominates New Zealand sporting venues

Drive 09/07/2018
Photo credit: iStock.

Junk food dominates New Zealand sport venues, according to new research led by the University of Otago.

The study, funded by the Health Research Council of New Zealand, investigated what kinds of food are available in sports settings.

Fizzy drinks, chocolate, hot chips and other fried foods make up 60-70 percent of all food sold at most New Zealand rugby and netball events.

Co-author Professor Louise Signal says a policy to make those numbers drop is "urgently needed".

She says the researchers looked at food sold at 31 rugby and 20 netball venues and interviewed sports administrators from a range of sports about the food environment in NZ sport.

"Healthy nutrition policies in sports clubs are urgently needed. This requires support from health agencies and leadership from national sports organisations," she says.

The research found sales of food did not generate any income for the sports organisations, and the food services were provided by caterers who are profit-driven.

New Zealand has one of the highest obesity rates in the world, with nearly one in three adults and over one in 10 children considered obese.

Listen to the full interview with Louise Signal above. 

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