Taiwan to ban sugary beverages on campus

The revision of the current regulations will affect schools ranging from elementary to senior high.

Stacks of beverages (Source: Pixabay)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Minister of Education Pan Wen-chung (潘文忠) said on Thursday the ministry agreed to revise the current regulations, which will consequently put a ban on the sale of sugary soft drinks in junior and senior high schools in Taiwan.

The Legislative Yuan discussed the proposal to revise the School Health Act, in which lawmakers urge to ban the sale of sugary beverages on campus.

Pan said the current school policies have already regulated the sale of sugary beverages, limiting each beverage or serving of desserts sold at school to be no more than 250 calories; therefore, further restrictions should not be challenging.

MOE official Huang Wen-lin (黃雯玲) told the Central News Agency that current policies are more strictly imposed on elementary and junior high schools, but the revision would include high schools as well.

Huang also said the sale of beverages on campus has been confined to juice, milk, soy milk, yogurt, water, and that the sugar in those drinks cannot provide more than 30 percent of the total calories.

Proposals for the revisions made by lawmakers also included banning the sale of meat containing such chemicals as ractopamine and the use of tableware containing plasticizers, and increasing nutritionists at school, but there was no immediate agreement on those issues.

Pan said regulations regarding food safety inspection would be mulled over with related authorities, for Taiwan, as a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), has to comply with the regulations of the international body.