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Liz Truss, the British conservative favorite for post-Boris, rehabilitates “junk food” – Corriere.it

from Paola De Carolis

The foreign minister who aims to lead the British conservatives (the result will be known on September 5) has promised: Enough taxes on these alimony, it is up to the citizen to decide

A month to win over Conservative Party members: who will win in the Downing Street race between Rishi Sunak, former Chancellor of the Exchequer, and Liz Truss, Foreign Minister, will be announced on September 5th. The campaigns of the two candidates thus enter the hot period in which every visit, every debate, every interview counts. While the strategists on both sides chase the last votes – some 200,000 Tories members will choose the next prime minister – the battleground is widening with each mandate: inflation, high cost of living, rising bills but also, surprisingly, junk food. .

Politics espoused by Boris Johnson’s limit the consumption of foods with excessive amounts of salt, sugar and fat Truss does not like, which considers it an irruption into the private sphere of citizens. If he becomes premier, he specified, he will not impose taxes on unhealthy dishes or limits on the sale and promotion of biscuits, chips, fast food and carbonated drinks. These taxes are over, he said. According to Truss, the executive has to deal with something else. What people want from the government is to provide good roads, reliable railways, broadband, mobile telephony, shorter waiting lists in hospitals, the ability to see your doctor quickly. The country does not need – he specified – for the government to decide what to eat and what not: the nanny-state, the nanny state is not part of his plans.

If given as a favorite, Truss’s statements have surprised in the context of the fight against obesity that has been at the center of various public initiatives for years and which has involved characters such as television chef Jamie Oliver. In the UK 54% of the adult population and 40% of minors are overweight. Johnson – strongly encouraged by doctors after recovering from Covid in April 2021 to lose a few pounds – had announced several measures which, however, have not always entered into force. If, on the one hand, the calorie content of each dish appeared on the menus of many restaurants, on the other, advertising on discounts and promotions of unhealthy foods was not banned.

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With a period approaching that between inflation and price increases promises to be extremely difficult for consumers, it would perhaps make little political sense to insist on the eating habits of citizens but for Truss’s future the step backwards that the minister was forced to to do yesterday on the salaries of public employees: among the measures she proposed was to cut the waste of the public administration and to review the pay of state employees outside London by entrusting it to regional commissions. The announcement immediately raised the controversy of several conservative MPs who saw the aiding and abetting of workers in the capital at the expense of colleagues from other areas. Accusing the press of having misrepresented her, Truss immediately withdrew the initiative: for the minister it is a misstep whose cost has yet to be ascertained. Sunak took the opportunity to accuse her rival of not having clear ideas about the country’s numbers and figures (she wants to cut taxes, but with what money?), But according to polls, Truss remains in the lead.

August 2, 2022 (change August 3, 2022 | 10:01)

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