Update – April 2021:
- A new Healthy choices policy directive for health services was announced by the Victorian Government on 12 April 2021.
- This new policy directive will apply to in-house managed retail outlets, all vending machines and all catering within public health services.
- The new policy directive will follow the existing Healthy choices: food and drink classification guide for food. However, with new guidance for drinks.
- High sugar (RED category) drinks will be required not to be sold or promoted in all vending and in-house retail outlets. (Previously this was 0% to a maximum of 20%)
- This new policy directive will be introduced around mid-2021. Health services will be given time to meet this new policy directive, with it being phased in.
- In the meantime, health services should continue their great efforts in implementing the Healthy choices guidelines in all of their retail outlets and those who have not, visit the Healthy Eating Advisory Service for free support to get started.
- Further information about this new policy directive will be provided in the coming months.
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
Implementation of Healthy Choices is supported by the Victorian Healthy Eating Enterprise and 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.