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Should supermarkets promote healthy eating? British Supermarkets are under constant pressure to uphold their consumer's expectations

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Should supermarkets promote healthy eating? British Supermarkets are under constant pressure to uphold their consumer's expectations, and at the moment healthy eating is a big issue. Consumers are changing their tastes towards the "healthier" options. This demand is putting pressure on the supermarkets to change their products and to compete against each other to make their product range healthier. Today the population in Britain is becoming more and more overweight and the number of clinically obese people in Britain has doubled in the past decade. 47 percent of men and 33 percent of women are overweight, and nearly a quarter of both sexes are obese.* Weight problems seem to be starting at an increasingly young age. In a recent study of Leeds school children, 20% of nine year olds and a third of 11 year old girls were overweight. One in ten of the primary school children in the study were obese.* This is mainly due to the emphasis of unhealthy and fattening foods, such as cakes, crisps and chocolate. Obesity can have a very bad impact on your health. It takes an average, nine years off an individual's life expectancy, and is an increased health risk.* The major health problems caused by obesity are diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, hypertension, respiratory disease, cancer, osteoarthritis and psychological problems. ...read more.


Supermarkets, such as Asda have rows of sweets lined up at the checkouts and this is therefore encouraging consumers to buy them. It is a very clever lay out to encourage consumers to buy the sweet and to catch the eye of children. It is also common to find chocolate and other sweet products at the end of isles so that customers have to walk past them and this convenience of not going down an isle becomes tempting. So the customer puts the chocolate in the trolley. The government is trying to encourage everyone to eat more healthily now to help eliminate the problem of obesity. "Healthy" food is thought of as a merit good. This means that the government will encourage it because will benefit Britain in many ways, including economically. As the demand for merit goods is unrelated to price, it can exceed supply. Marginal social cost and benefit can be used to show this. In the diagram below the consumption of "healthy foods" is OA and the efficient level of consumption is OB. This means that the country would benefit more if more "healthy food" was consumed. ...read more.


Also, promoting healthy eating would boost the company's reputation and it would be thought of as having very good social responsibility. Therefore, from weighing out all the costs and benefits, I can conclude that supermarkets in Britain should be urged to do more to promote healthy eating. This is because the benefits outweigh the costs. Healthy eating will reduce the number of health problems dramatically and this would save doctors and surgeons a great deal of time, which is valuable. It will also save dentists time, due to less sugary foods and therefore less cavities to be filled. Another advantage is to the supermarkets themselves, because with new products consumers will increase their demand and thus causing the supermarket revenue to increase. This means that as well as the consumers being happy; the stakeholders of the supermarkets will also be pleased. This helps the supermarkets to gain a good reputation and prestige. By promoting healthy eating the supermarkets are becoming socially responsible and they will be "looking after" their customers. It will be a change for the better, for everyone! Words: 1523 * http://www.preventdisease.com/news/articles/britain_considers_obesity_levy.shtml * http://www.annecollins.com/weight_health/obesity-overweight.htm * http://www.annecollins.com/weight_health/obesity-overweight.htm * http://www.eufic.org/en/quickfacts/obesity.htm * http://www.americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=4488 * http://www.hyp.ac.uk/cash/home/salt_and_health.htm * http://www.northmemorial.com/HealthEncyclopedia/content/1877.asp * http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Food_additives?open * http://www.nutraingredients.com/news/news-NG.asp?n=52519-tesco-adds-gi * Nuffield Economics and business Students' Book ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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