Poster Topical Area: Policy

Location: Hall D

Poster Board Number: 845

P24-003 - A new food and nutrition policy for Portugal: implementation and first results

Monday, Jun 11
8:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Objectives: We describe the implementation process of the new Integrated Strategy for the Promotion of Healthy Eating (EIPAS) in Portugal and it first results in terms of main measures and achievements. 

EIPAS was launch in 2017, resulting from a consensual work agreed by an interministerial group, including ministries of finance, internal affairs, education, health, economy, agriculture and sea. This working group, led by the health sector, worked over a year and identified difficulties and opportunities for intervention as well as the priority areas. The framework produced was based on the recommendations from the WHO European Food and Nutrition Action Plan 2015-2020 and from the EU High Level Group on Nutrition and Physical Activity. This strategy was also based on the last Portuguese dietary intake survey (2015/2016). EIPAS also reflects a public hearing from stakeholders including the food industry. 

EIPAS was published as a Law and intends to improve dietary habits of the population. It considers the challenge proposed by the WHO of “health in all policies” and has three main goals: 1) to promote healthy food environments in public settings; 2) to promote food reformulation, namely in terms of sugar, salt and trans fatty acids; and 3) to promote literacy and autonomy for healthy consumer choices. To achieve these goals a set of 51 measures were proposed and distributed by the 7 ministries involved. Under the scope of this strategy, Portugal have already implemented several measures: a) definition of standards for food offer at all public health-care facilities; b) implementation of a sugar tax on sweetened beverages; c) implementation of a voluntary agreement for salt reduction in bread to values of 1.0g/100g of bread with the bakery industry; d) design an interpretative model of front of pack labelling; and e) improve the nutritional quality of national food aid program for low-income groups. 

By the first time Portugal has a nutrition policy based on the WHO concept of “health in all policies” and on national data of food intake. Some measures are already in place, other are in preparation. The capacity to implement all of the 51 measures and the inherent difficulties make this process an authentic political and social laboratory that deserves to be followed.

CoAuthors: Pedro Gra├ža – Directorate-General of Health (DSG) of Portugal and Faculty of Nutrition and Food Sciences, University of Porto; Maria Joao Gregorio – Directorate-General of Health (DGS) of Portugal, Faculty of Nutrition and Food Sciences, University of Porto and EpiDoC Unit, CEDOC, NOVA Medical School; Sofia Mendes de Sousa – Directorate-General of Health (DGS), Portugal; Jose Camolas – Directorate-General of Health (DGS), Portugal

Maria Joao Gregorio

Directorate-General of Health (DGS) of Portugal, Faculty of Nutrition and Food Sciences, University of Porto and EpiDoC Unit, CEDOC, NOVA Medical School
Porto, Porto, Portugal