BEUC represents 40 consumer groups

Consumer groups Monday called on members of the European Parliament to restrict junk food TV ads aimed at children, ahead of a debate at the parliament in Strasbourg on proposed changes to the Television Without Frontiers directive.

“It is essential to set limits,” said BEUC, which represents 40 consumer orgs throughout the European Union.

BEUC said in a statement that it would like to see restrictions in line with those imposed by the U.K.’s communications regulatory agency Ofcom in November, which will ban the TV advertising of foods high in fat, sugar or salt in and around all programs appealing to children.

The group also called for a ban on product placement, saying a compromise deal proposed in a preliminary parliamentary debate last month would mean “viewers will continue to be manipulated by commercial messages fully integrated into the plots of TV shows.”

The European Parliament is due to debate the Television Without Frontiers directive today.

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