Skip to main content

Bill S-228

If you have any questions or comments regarding the accessibility of this publication, please contact us at accessible@parl.gc.ca.

Skip to Document Navigation Skip to Document Content

First Session, Forty-second Parliament,
64-65-66 Elizabeth II, 2015-2016-2017
SENATE OF CANADA
BILL S-228
An Act to amend the Food and Drugs Act (prohibiting food and beverage marketing directed at children)
AS PASSED
BY THE SENATE
September 28, 2017
4211525


SUMMARY
This enactment amends the Food and Drugs Act to prohibit food and beverage marketing directed at persons under 17 years of age.
Available on the Senate of Canada website at the following address:
www.sencanada.ca/en


1st Session, 42nd Parliament,
64-65-66 Elizabeth II, 2015-2016-2017
SENATE OF CANADA
BILL S-228
An Act to amend the Food and Drugs Act (prohibiting food and beverage marketing directed at children)
Preamble
Whereas the Public Health Agency of Canada stated in its 2012 report entitled Curbing Childhood Obesity: A Federal, Provincial and Territorial Framework for Action to Promote Healthy Weights that the rate of childhood obesity in Canada has been rising steadily in recent decades;
Whereas, during its 2016 study on the increasing incidence of obesity in Canada, the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology (the “Senate Committee”) heard experts testify that the number of obese children in Canada has tripled since 1980 and that Canada ranks sixth among industrialized nations in respect of its percentage of children who are obese;
Whereas overweight and obese children are at an increased risk for the premature onset of chronic conditions and illnesses such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, joint problems, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke and some cancers;
Whereas being overweight or obese also impacts the mental health and well-being of children, as well as other aspects of their lives;
Whereas being overweight or obese is difficult to reverse, and research shows overweight or obese children are more likely to continue to be overweight or obese into adulthood;
Whereas obesity also has an impact on society as a whole through increased health care spending and loss of workforce productivity;
Whereas, in its final report presented on January 25, 2016, the World Health Organization’s Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity found that there is unequivocal evidence that the marketing of unhealthy foods and sugar-sweetened beverages has a negative impact on childhood obesity, and recommended that any attempt to tackle childhood obesity should include a reduction in the exposure of children to marketing;
Whereas leading health organizations, including the World Health Organization and its regional offices such as the Pan American Health Organization, have developed evidence-based nutrient profiling models that serve as a basis for classifying food as unhealthy according to their nutritional composition for reasons related to preventing disease and promoting health;
Whereas children are particularly vulnerable to marketing and its persuasive influence over their food preferences and consumption;
Whereas marketing of food and beverages to children remains widespread in Canada despite voluntary measures such as the Broadcast Code for Advertising to Children and the Canadian Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative;
Whereas the rapidly increasing rate of childhood obesity in Canada is a matter of national concern;
Whereas the protection of vulnerable children from the manipulative influence of marketing of food and beverages is predicated on a pressing and substantial concern and calls for a federal legislative response;
Whereas the Senate Committee recommended, in its report entitled Obesity in Canada: A Whole-of-Society Approach for a Healthier Canada tabled on March 1, 2016, that the federal government implement a prohibition on the advertising of foods and beverages to children;
And whereas it is widely acknowledged that marketing to children has spread well beyond the traditional media of television, radio and print to include online and other digital content and celebrity and character endorsement, and it is therefore critical that restrictions on marketing of food and beverages to children cover all potential marketing media in a broad and robust fashion in order to provide fulsome protection to young Canadians;
Now, therefore, Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:

Short Title

Short Title
1This Act may be cited as the Child Health Protection Act.
R.‍S.‍, c. F-27

Food and Drugs Act

2Section 2 of the Food and Drugs Act is amended by adding the following in alphabetical order:
children means persons who are under 17 years of age; (enfants)
3The Act is amended by adding the following after the heading “Food” before section 4:
General Provisions
4The Act is amended by adding the following after section 7:
Advertising Directed at Children
Advertising directed at children
7.‍1Subject to the regulations, no person shall advertise unhealthy food in a manner that is directed primarily at children.
Trade-marks
7.‍2(1)Despite the Trade-marks Act, the registration of a trade-mark shall not be held invalid on the basis of paragraph 18(1)‍(b) or (c) of that Act as a result of compliance with this Act or any regulations made under it for the purposes of section 7.‍1.
For greater certainty
(2)For greater certainty, the absence of use of a trade-mark as a result of compliance with this Act or any regulations made under it for the purposes of section 7.‍1 constitutes special circumstances that excuse the absence of use for the purposes of the Trade-marks Act.
5The Act is amended by adding the following after paragraph 30(1)‍(e):
(e.‍1)for the purposes of section 7.‍1,
(i)defining unhealthy food or setting out the criteria for determining whether a food is unhealthy, and
(ii)setting out the factors to be considered in determining whether unhealthy food is advertised in a manner that is primarily directed at children, including how, when and where an advertisement is communicated;

Coming into Force

Two years after royal assent
6This Act comes into force on the second anniversary of the day on which it receives royal assent.
Published under authority of the Senate of Canada

Publication Explorer
Publication Explorer
ParlVU