Regulatory governance pathways to improve the efficacy of Australian food policies

Yandisa Ngqangashe, Sharon Friel

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


    Background: Effective regulatory governance, which entails the actors, processes and contexts within which policies are developed, designed and implemented, is crucial for food policies to improve food environments, consumer behaviour and diet-related health. Objective: To critically assess Australian food policies for the presence of necessary and sufficient regulatory governance conditions that have been shown to effect positive nutrition outcomes from food policies. Methods: We assessed the Australian National Association of Advertisers (AANA) Food and Beverage Advertising Code, Health Star Rating Front of Pack labelling system and Sodium reformulation under the Healthy Food Partnership (HFP). The policies were analysed for the presence/absence of five regulatory governance conditions – the extent of industry involvement, regulatory design, instrument design, monitoring and enforcement. Results: All three policies lack one or more regulatory governance conditions crucial for policy success. Each policy has high industry involvement, an absence of government-led policy-making underpinned by legislation and lacks comprehensive enforcement. Except for the Health Star Rating system, the policies did not have comprehensive monitoring – a necessary condition for policy success. Public health Implications: The efficacy of these three policies can be enhanced by minimising industry involvement, improving government oversight and improving monitoring systems.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)710-715
    JournalAustralian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2022


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