Burnham: High-Sugar Cereals Should Be Banned

High-sugar breakfast cereals should be banned to stop children getting fat, according to the shadow health secretary Andy Burnham.

The Labour frontbencher said regulations should be introduced to cap the levels of salt, fat and sugar in food.

Mr Burnham has started garnering public and expert opinion on the subject as part of a consultation on tackling obesity.

"If we fail to act we are storing up huge problems for the country and the NHS in the long term," he said.

He is floating the idea of a 30% cap on sugar in cereals, arguing that many children's breakfast cereals are over one-third sugar by weight.

"I don't think any parent would be comfortable with their child eating something that is 40% sugar," he told The Daily Telegraph.

Last week, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development figures revealed 26.6% of British girls were obese and 22.7% of boys - double that of youngsters in France.

The coalition says voluntary deals with industry through the Responsibility Deal has cut salt, fat and sugar content in our food.

But Mr Burnham says the current voluntary approach is not working and new drastic measures are required to combat childhood obesity.