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Junk food ban will cost U.K. TV

Broadcasters have until Dec. '08 to comply

LONDON — The ban on junk food advertising on TV in the U.K. is to be rolled out from April 1. Children’s channels will have until December 2008 to implement the ban fully.

Media regulator Ofcom said Thursday it reckoned the ban will cost broadcasters £39 million ($76 million) a year in lost ad coin.

From April 1, ads for foods high in fat, sugar and salt will be banned during or around programs made specifically for children or those with special appeal to youngsters aged seven to nine.

The phased introduction of the new rules mean that the ban on ads aimed at four to 15 year olds must be implemented by Jan. 1, 2008.

Ofcom reckons the new rules mean that under-16s will be exposed to 41% fewer junk food ads.

The timetable, published Thursday, follows a consultation on the proposed ban, announced last November.

The regulator will review the restrictions in the fall of 2008.

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