As a rule, I trust retailers and consumers to do the right thing: I don’t feel checkout confectionery bans are necessary, for example, and disagree with demonisation of super-strength beers.
But, speaking as a parent, the trade needs to address the sale of energy drinks to children - particularly in light of Morrisons shelving its trial ban on the practice.
“The trade urgently needs to address the sale of energy drinks to children”
I don’t want my 11-year-old buying a product labelled “not recommended for children”. But that’s what he does do on occasion (I sometimes confiscate them but can’t police his purchasing 24/7).
I am far from alone in having such concerns, and the trade needs to take a proactive approach to the issue.
Further research may provide a solution as there is still plenty of uncertainty about the effects that caffeine has on children; or perhaps products could be developed that are more suitable for kids while retaining the appeal of the brand.
Without action, I fear the industry could eventually face statutory regulation - and that’s something worth expending energy to avoid.
Vince Bamford, buying & supplying editor