I’m always ambivalent about using legislation to change behaviour. You have to be smart about it; blanket bans can wind up backfiring. (Memo to self: confirm there’s no legislation banning blankets.)
But my immediate reaction to the proposal in Ontario to ban marketing junk food to kids is pretty unambiguous: go for it.
Here’s where I should run through the public health evidence supporting such a ban (for instance, after a similar ban in Quebec, fast-food purchases fell 13%). And where I should acknowledge the need for a broader set of policies in addition to legislation.
But instead, I’m just going to tell you that I have an overwhelming bias on this score: a deep-seated, unshakeable hatred for candy stands at checkout counters. Specifically, the candy stands that sit – in store after store after store after store – at kids’-eye level.