The Victorian Government is helping to create health promoting environments throughout the state. Healthy Choices is a framework for improving the provision and promotion of healthier foods and drinks in key settings where Victorians spend their time.
The Healthy Choices framework includes:
- A classification guide that explains the Victorian Government's traffic light system for classifying foods and drinks as GREEN (best choices), AMBER (choose carefully) or RED (limit). The Healthy Choices: food and drink classification guide was updated at the end of 2020. A summary of the main changes between the current 2020 and previous 2016 version can be found here.
- Policy guidelines to support the implementation of Healthy Choices in hospitals and health services, sport and recreation centres, workplaces and parks and recreational reserves
- A policy directive that applies to Victorian public health services. This policy directive is based on the existing Healthy choices: food and drink classification guide and policy guidelines for hospitals and health services, for food, with a new requirement for high sugar (RED category) drinks not to be sold, provided or promoted in any in-house managed retail outlets, all vending, all catering, and items purchased by staff and visitors from patient/resident menus. It applies to all sites/facilities across public health services, including, but not limited to hospitals, public sector residential aged care services (PSRACS) and integrated community health services.
Implementation of Healthy Choices is supported by the Healthy Eating Advisory Service. A number of settings have implemented Healthy Choices, read some of their case studies.
The Healthy Eating Advisory Service
The Healthy Eating Advisory Service (HEAS) is delivered by experienced nutritionists and dietitians at Nutrition Australia Vic Division, with support from the Victorian Government. HEAS helps organisations to put Healthy Choices into practice and provide and promote healthier food and drink choices. HEAS offers online learning; online menu, vending, product and recipe assessments via FoodChecker; and provides information and guidance on planning healthier menus, providing suitable catering and creating healthier food environments.
Visit Healthy Eating Advisory Service for more information.