Members of the writing group for this manuscript, listed in order of their contribution to the writing of the manuscript.
Monitoring and benchmarking government policies and actions to improve the healthiness of food environments: a proposed Government Healthy Food Environment Policy Index
Article first published online: 17 SEP 2013
© 2013 The Authors. Obesity Reviews published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of the International Association for the Study of Obesity.
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and is not used for commercial purposes.
Special Issue: INFORMAS (International Network for Food and Obesity/non-communicable diseases, Research, Monitoring and Action Support): rationale, framework and approach
Volume 14, Issue Supplement S1, pages 24–37, October 2013
How to Cite
Swinburn, B., Vandevijvere, S., Kraak, V., Sacks, G., Snowdon, W., Hawkes, C., Barquera, S., Friel, S., Kelly, B., Kumanyika, S., L'Abbé, M., Lee, A., Lobstein, T., Ma, J., Macmullan, J., Mohan, S., Monteiro, C., Neal, B., Rayner, M., Sanders, D., Walker, C. and INFORMAS (2013), Monitoring and benchmarking government policies and actions to improve the healthiness of food environments: a proposed Government Healthy Food Environment Policy Index. Obesity Reviews, 14: 24–37. doi: 10.1111/obr.12073
- Issue published online: 17 SEP 2013
- Article first published online: 17 SEP 2013
- Rockefeller Foundation
- International Obesity Taskforce (IOTF)
- University of Auckland
- Deakin University
- George Institute
- University of Sydney
- Queensland University of Technology
- University of Oxford
- University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine
- World Cancer Research Fund International
- University of Toronto
- Australian National University
- Faculty of Health at Deakin University
- government policies;
- non-communicable diseases;
- obesity prevention
Government action is essential to increase the healthiness of food environments and reduce obesity, diet-related non-communicable diseases (NCDs), and their related inequalities. This paper proposes a monitoring framework to assess government policies and actions for creating healthy food environments. Recommendations from relevant authoritative organizations and expert advisory groups for reducing obesity and NCDs were examined, and pertinent components were incorporated into a comprehensive framework for monitoring government policies and actions. A Government Healthy Food Environment Policy Index (Food-EPI) was developed, which comprises a ‘policy’ component with seven domains on specific aspects of food environments, and an ‘infrastructure support’ component with seven domains to strengthen systems to prevent obesity and NCDs. These were revised through a week-long consultation process with international experts. Examples of good practice statements are proposed within each domain, and these will evolve into benchmarks established by governments at the forefront of creating and implementing food policies for good health. A rating process is proposed to assess a government's level of policy implementation towards good practice. The Food-EPI will be pre-tested and piloted in countries of varying size and income levels. The benchmarking of government policy implementation has the potential to catalyse greater action to reduce obesity and NCDs.