Food and drink

Dirty is as Dirty does

Nicky Hager reckons I play politics dirty.

He is right, I do….So what?

But he is in reality a sanctimonious hypocrite.

Twice now he has written books from stolen and/or hacked books about New Zealand politics.

Funny how they are always National party aligned people who have their emails hacked or stolen by accomplices of Nicky Hager.

Who is the one playing dirty politics?

The left of course rejoices, but never once stops to winder why it is that nothing like this surfaces in return.

They wrongly assume that they are squeaky clean. They are not. It is just that no one on the right is prepared to actually commit crimes to play their dirty politics.

And is it really that dirty? Tony Falkenstein doesn’t seem to think so, despite me challenging his shilling against “Big Sugar” in order sell his own water.

And the victim of an alleged corporate smear campaign is shrugging off claims that a Food and Grocery Council public relations advisor ordered and paid for online attacks.

Mr Hager’s book claims that Tony Falkenstein, who was involved in a legal case against Coca Cola, was the target of online attacks written by Mr Slater.

Coca Cola is one of the council’s members.

The book claims the attacks were paid for by the council’s public relations agent, Carrick Graham.

The victim of the online smear campaign, Tony Falkenstein, said he was not too worried about the revelations.

“I think that’s part of lobbying, and if I look at it from their point of view, hey if someone’s got a different opinion that could be detrimental to their members, they’re going to use any tactic possible to make sure they get their own opinion across.”

Coca Cola could not be reached for comment, while Mr Slater, Mr Graham and the Council are refusing to comment.

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Some are starting to wake up to the threat of plain packaging

I have been telling anyone who would listen, both on this site and in speeches that other businesses will be the next target for plain packing after the health nazis have finished destroying tobacco.

Some just shake their heads and say that it will never happen to their industry, others acknowledge it but think that their blond media trained bimbos sitting outside the CEOs office will be able to bat off the massed forces of state funded troughers presenting their “evidence” to bewildered and easily confused politicians.

They are wrong, and the pain isn’t far off, particularly for the food and beverage industry.

Some are waking up though.

Lawyers for confectioner Mars have warned that plain packaging for tobacco could have a major impact on other products to the detriment of consumers, according betterRetailing.

Should the government proceed with plans to introduce plain packaging, it could lead to brand names being put into plain type, as well as certain colours and shapes being removed from product packaging.

Mars argued that these types of branding helped consumers to identify quality products, which had a lesser risk of being counterfeited. Mars would certainly be vulnerable to such regulations, with ownership of Dolmio and Uncle Ben’s, as well as its chocolate and petcare products. ¬†¬† Read more »

The insanity of sugar and fat taxes

Katherine Rich pushes back against the health nazis who want to put a tax on sugar and fat.

Sugar taxes will extract more money from citizens’ wallets for governments but do nothing to curb obesity.

While sugar is seen by some as the current food demon, it’s important to dial back the hysteria for a fact-based discussion.

Sugars are an important part of people’s diets, providing energy for the body and brain. Over the past decade, sucrose consumption in New Zealand has declined, and reports suggest most people consume at moderate levels.

All this while obesity has been rising. The remaining part of the energy-in, energy-out equation is physical activity, but anti-sugar activists prefer to blame food companies.

The food companies just sit there like stunned mullets as their customers and products are demonised. They thought that it would never happen to them if only they just kept quiet while tobacco companies were bashed.

They were wrong.

The inconvenient truth for those wanting to scapegoat full-sugar carbonated drinks – fizzy – is that there has been a dramatic drop in sales in the past 15 years as consumers turn to the growing array of zero calorie and diet fizz options now available.

With Kiwis eating less sugar and drinking less sugary fizz at a time of rising obesity levels, it’s nonsense to pretend fizz taxes are going to magic away the obesity problem.

So long as the health nazis promote the food pyramid that is heavy on carbohydrates and low on proteins then we will continue to get fatter, especially if we don;t exercise to burn those calorie loadings. Taxing sugars and fats won’t work. ¬†¬† Read more »

Sugar Tax lobbyists hitting up MPs Thursday


Election year always gets activist groups all fired up about beating their drum in the hope MPs searching for something to say pick up on their cause.

Blaming sugary drinks for the cause of obesity in NZ is the hot topic at the moment.

With Coca-Cola doing their best to ensure they own the obesity problem with failed interviews like this one with Duncan Garner,  other companies Frucor, Red Bull, The Better Drinks Company are all looking increasing uneasy with where the debate is heading.

Energy drink companies like Frucor‚Äôs (makers of V), Red Bull and Monster are already under pressure with¬†bans on the sale of energy drinks to under 18 year olds in some EU countries.¬† Read more »

Charge the parents, don’t tax the drinks

I have long held the position that it is fat bastards who should pay for their health concerns as a result of their poor self control. Introduce a Fat bastard Tax not what the health busybodies want which is a tax on all products containing sugar or fat…or whatever ingredient they will hate on next.

In the case of children then tax the parents who let their kids become fat bastards.

Christina Odone blogs at The Telegraph:

“What do we hate? The Nanny state!” might be a suitable marching song for conservatives ‚ÄĒ until, that is, children’s well-being is compromised. When parents abuse their role as their child’s protectors the state is right to intervene. Which is why the couple in Norfolk, arrested for allowing their son’s weight to reach 15 stone, should face court.

Imagine parents who regularly gave their son heroin; or a bottle of vodka. Anyone observing such behaviour would instinctively call the police to save the child. The same now has to be true of a child whose parents are feeding him too many of the wrong things. We now know that food ‚ÄĒ junk food, fatty food, sugar, additives ‚Äď can prove as damaging to a child’s health as heroin or alcohol. Indeed, sugar is so toxic that experts claim it is as bad as tobacco: it leads not only to obesity, but to diabetes too.

Parents who ignore these facts and ply their children with excess food (or just really bad food) are abusing their children as clearly as those who let them take drugs. In the case of the couple in Norfolk, their son suffers from autism: he is all the more at the mercy of his parents’ care. They defend his weight by claiming that it is down to bad genes. Wrong: it’s down to the parents.

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The mediterranean diet will save our kids from obesity…oh wait!

We have been told by many, many health jihadists that our kids are fat and that if we modelled our diets on the mediterranean diet to solve this.

But wait…the heftiest kids in the world are fatties who eat the mediterranean diet…ahead of our kids.

Matthew Yglesias writes at Vox:

Most people know that the United States has a childhood obesity problem. Less well known is that according to¬†the latest data from the OECD¬†is that we are not actually the world leaders in experiencing this issue. It’s Greece and Italy who have the most overweight kids:


overweightkids Read more »

Anti-sugar fanatics now attacking Coke in the UK, how long before they start up here?

ColaBeerAnti-sugar fanatics have launched a campaign against Coca-cola in the UK using all the same nasty tactics against them as have been used against tobacco companies.

For years food giants have been told that the same treatment was coming their way, and for years they have sat back and watched tobacco get hammered, thinking wrongly that itwould never happen to them.

They were wrong, and now they are in a war without any weapons or ability to fight back.

Coca-Cola has been accused of using a £20 million anti-obesity drive to distract attention from its contribution to Britain’s obesity epidemic.

The drinks giant plans to pour millions into fitness programme called Coca-Cola Zero ParkLives, offering thousands of free sessions and coaching for families across 70 parks in England.

But the announcement immediately attracted criticism from nutrition campaigners who have labelled the scheme ‚Äúobscene‚ÄĚ.

Dr Aseem Malhotra, cardiologist and science director for the Action on Sugar campaign group, told¬†The Daily Telegraph: ‚ÄúI think this is a really disingenuous stunt. They are trying to deflect attention from their own part in creating an obesity epidemic, which has been fuelled almost entirely by rising calorie consumption.‚ÄĚ

Dr Malhotra added the programme was ‚Äúobscene‚ÄĚ because it encouraged such companies to associate themselves with active lifestyles.

Critics have cited warnings from Public Health England that soft drinks and fruit juices packed with sugar are creating an obesity epidemic, especially among young people.

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Christchurch gunning for fast food in latest assault by health control freaks


Yesterday The Press ran an article about Vicki Buck (former Christchurch City Mayor and now Deputy Mayor) opposing the establishment of any further fast food outlets on Memorial Ave (main
route from airport) on the basis of containing “fat and sugar”.

And yes KFC and McDonalds got a mention.

Christchurch City councillors yesterday discussed banning additional takeaway outlets along Memorial Ave, near Russley Rd, but instead opted to have them pushed further back on sites.

Deputy Mayor Vicki Buck said there was at present no limit on the number of fast food outlets allowed near the airport. She was concerned tourists’ eyes would be assaulted by a lineup of “fat and sugar” as they entered the city.

“I don’t want it to be, ‘Welcome to Christchurch, and here’s McDonald’s and KFC’,” Buck said.

Council senior planner Mark Stevenson said it was possible to create a rule to ban fast food outlets from fronting on to Memorial Ave.

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The astonishing hypocrisy of Wendyl Nissen

Wendyl Nissen is on another anti-sugar tirade in today’s NZ Herald. Attacking a ready made sweet and sour meal for having too much sugar in it.

I was alerted to sweet and sour meals by an article in the Sunday Times which found that a sweet and sour ready meal had more sugar in it than a chocolate bar and many others were extremely high in sugar.

A quick scan of frozen ready meals in my local supermarket did not reveal such shocking results but this jar did.


This is very heavy in sugar. Per 130g serving which is a quarter of the jar ( it serves four people) you will get 30g or just over 7 teaspoons of sugar. That means that in the whole jar there are 28.5 teaspoons of sugar. I understand that it’s called “Sweet & Sour” so you do need a bit of sweet but this amount seems excessive, in my opinion.


This is low in fat which is great. You will get just 0.4g of fat per 130g serve. But what it lacks in fat it makes up for in sugar – at just over 7 teaspoons of sugar per serve – and salt at 690mg. I often find that when a producer takes all the fat out of a product you will find salt and sugar in there to boost the flavour.

We are being advised to keep our sugar down to about 10 teaspoons a day for good health so one meal of this would take up a big portion of your daily allowance.

Instead scan labels for a simmer sauce which has less sugar and salt for your next easy to prepare meal.

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UN suggests taxing food like tobacco

Plain packaging coming for McDonalds?

Plain packaging coming for McDonalds?

People said it would never happen, that anti-tobacco tactics would spread into other areas.

Well, i have been proved right and manufacturers of food products should be very afraid now the UN has taken an interest in taxing and controlling food products like tobacco.

But if you thought that was bad, they have also suggested that unhealthy diets pose a greater risk to global health than the increasingly regulated sale of tobacco and governments should move fast to tax harmful food products.

In a statement issued on the opening of the annual summit of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Belgian professor Olivier de Schutter called for efforts to launch negotiations on a global pact to tackle the obesity epidemic.

“Unhealthy diets are now a greater threat to global health than tobacco. Just as the world came together to regulate the risks of tobacco, a bold framework convention on adequate diets must now be agreed,” he said. ¬† Read more »