Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Voluntary -----> Compulsory

Sigh. Haven't we been here before?

Pork pies, sausage rolls and packs of crisps should all be shrunk in size to tackle Britain's obesity epidemic, the Government's chief food adviser has recommended.

Any changes the FSA formally recommends, following the consultation, will be voluntary. However, most people in the food industry believe the power and influence of the FSA, which is both regulator and policy adviser to the Government, will mean the recommendations will be adopted by all the major manufacturers.

It matters not whether they adopt the voluntary guidelines or not. The state will legislate to enshrine these plans into law anyway, it's how they have always worked.

Remember this?

Maureen Moore, Chief Executive of ASH Scotland , said:

"Scotland 's smoking ban is delivering effective protection, something that both ventilation and voluntary approaches failed to do."

Or this?

There should be a ban on all alcohol advertising, including sports and music sponsorship, doctors say.

Dr Vivienne Nathanson: "Voluntary marketing codes are just not working"

Yet again we see the state interfering where it has no place. Businesses offer products, consumers in a 'free' society either purchase the products or don't. If the product is sized inadequately, or not to the taste of the purchaser, they won't buy and the vendor must rethink its policy to attract sales.

It is a natural, and infallible, system which ensures food manufacturers and their customers are almost always happy.

Once government starts sticking its grimy, corrupt, dictatorial fingers into the very workings of the business community, the stench of paternalistic communitarianism becomes retch-inducing.

There is, at least, a consultation on this. But then, under Labour, such procedures have been bastardised to such an extent that we can more readily trust a crack-addled whore to look after our credit cards for a couple of hours.

How long before we can kick these cuntnuggets out, again?

Addendum: Alan 'Dancing Queen' Johnson told us this was on the cards in February, by the way. And you just know that if Labour want, they will throw an ideological tantrum until they get. Don't vote Labour.


Neal Asher said...

What a load of bansturbators. So now I'll have to eat four packets of pork scratchings rather than two. Oh, and produce twice the amount of rubbish to go in the landfill. They can go in alongside all those fucking paracetamol blister packs I discard after emptying the pills into a bottle.

Curmudgeon said...

Well, you can at least eat two instead of one - if "standard" sizes become too small, then that will become the norm. Sometimes a 330ml can of soft drink is enough for me, but I doubt whether a 250ml can ever would be. A lot of chocolate bars are now sold in single bars and twin packs which are about 50% bigger.

What we may well see in the next few years is a "voluntary" reduction in the strength of popular alcoholic drinks.

Old Holborn said...


We are going to have to kill them. With fire.

It's the only way

timbone said...

Bought a multi pack of niknaks the other day because they were on offer, hadn't had them for ages, remembered how yummy they were. Alas, the yumminess has been removed, they were tasteless with a 'gammy' texture. The only thing similar to the pre health version was the name and packaging.

By the way Curmudgeon, did you know that they are already reducing the alcohol content of looney juice? sorry, Stella.

Curmudgeon said...

Timbone, I have already written about it on my blog :-)

TheFatBigot said...

Manufacturers want to make sales, consumers don't want to waste money. Those are the only two relevant facts.

Portion sizes are not calculated on a whim by manufacturers of these products. They know that sales will be maximised by portion sizes being matched to the desires of customers.

Many of them experiment from time to time by increasing or decreasing sizes and adjusting prices. The little people who buy this stuff tell them what works or doesn't work because the little people react to these changes and the result can be read in the manufacturer's accounts.

No guidelines can change these facts. Voluntary guidelines can affect what manufacturers do but cannot affect consumer's desires. That is why the nanny state must always resort to compulsion.

Junican said...

Once upon a time, the then government introduced a law which required everyone to wear a seatbelt in cars.
There is no doubt that, despite the furore about 'freedom'. the law was 99.999...% complied with, and is still so today.
Government learnt a lot from this exercise - invoke lots of advertising, some 'scientists' and doctors to pronounce on the damage of impacts, some statisticians to produce studies on likely consequences AND REPETITION, and, bob's yer uncle, problem solved.

Since then, the same methods have been employed, to great effect (remember "Ask Sid"?

In the case of seatbelts, ordinary people, when they had thought about it, by and large agreed that it was a good idea, which is why they complied and continue to do so. The "Ask Sid" campaign? - well, no one had much idea what privatisation entailed and went along with the idea because individuals saw the possibility of profits by buying shares.

Unfortunately for the government, these methods (advertising, experts, statistics AND REPETITION), do not always work.

I think that the smoking ban is the first large scale employment of 'the method' which has not worked. There are enough smokers, and intelligent, verbose, questioning smokers at that, to call into question the reality of the claims repeated and repeated by the politicians, pseudo-scientists, doctors, etc to upset government plans. The same applies to alcohol and to global warming. 'The Method' is not working.

Do you know that Professor Jones has agreed to 'step aside' while the university of east Anglia have an investigation? Wheels within wheels here I think. Who suggested it? Why 'step aside' rather than 'step down'? How long will the investigation take? Why is the university doing the investigating rather than the government? Also, it seems that this Professor Mann (the hockey stick chap) is also being investigated by his university in America. This info is courtesy of "The Drudge Report".

We note that since the emails re collusion among climatologists came to light, the MSM continue to push global warming for all it is worth. More and more reports supporting global warming, getting sillier and sillier, are appearing in the MSM prior to Copenhagen. Is this 'the method' being invoked harder and harder? I think so.

The answer, from our point of view, has to be that the more they push, the more we resist. We can resist, as you rightly pointed out elsewhere, by refusing to co-operate with the powers that be in other ways. For example, NO, we will NOT contribute to the charities which are against us. We WILL empty our car ashtrays in the street (unobserved). We will defy them in a thousand ways. Also, we will complain and complain and complain. We will invent ways to complain and we will go on complaining until we make ourselves sick, but, more importantly, until we make them sick.

Von Spreuth said...

A drinker will be a drinker and a fat bastard a fat bastard no matter WHAT the cost is. Pies are 50% smaller? Buy TWO.

All this does is make the "responsible" drinkers and eaters pay more and THAT is the "Governments" aim. NOTHING else.

Dick the Prick said...

Have you seen that Ginsters have started making a sausage roll with pickle already in it! That's right - the pickle is already in it! It's the future, that uncharted horizon of infinite possibility, the fusion between imagination and fact, the transition of faith and empiricism - sausage rolls with pickle - genuis, unadulterated genuis.

Dick Puddlecote said...

Wot the Fat Bigot said.

It's an incredibly futile exercise from the FSA. Even the reduction in fat levels for sausages could backfire - if someone's body is keen on something of that nature, and their taste isn't satisfied by their sausage sarnie, they'll be more likely to pop down the chip shop/kebab house/pizzeria later for a top up.

The food business should be left alone on this, quango intervention will not change a thing and may end up being counter-productive. But then, the public sector is generally jam-packed with rent-seeking, empire-building fucktards so not too surprised.