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We must take ‘urgent’ action on global obesity

By Rod Addy , 02-Jul-2010

Overconsumption of calories is a global issue that threatens the developed and developing world and requires urgent action, says Paul Bulcke, chief executive of Nestlé.

Speaking at the 2010 Global Summit of The Consumer Goods Forum in London last month, Bulcke said obesity was one of the top challenges facing the world today. He included it alongside global hunger as a form of malnutrition, with a resultant long-term impact on health costs.

Despite forecasts by some health experts that breakthroughs in nutrition would lead to an increase in life expectancy in many countries, Bulcke said overconsumption or consumption of high-calorie foods could counteract this prediction: "The availability of more calories is linked with life expectancy. Some experts are expecting life expectancy to go down."

Part of the answer lay in education, he said. "Education is definitely something that can add value. Nestlé has touched more than 10M schoolchildren through nutritional education."

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