Coun­cil says we are sweet enough


Sug­ary drinks will be harder to get af­ter the city coun­cil voted to re­strict their sale and sup­ply at venues it owns and events it runs.

The coun­cil’s com­mu­nity de­vel­op­ment com­mit­tee voted 8-6 for bring­ing in the pol­icy, with the de­bate rang­ing from fears about free­dom of choice to the coun­cil turn­ing into the ‘‘su­gar po­lice’’.

The pol­icy means all the city’s li­braries and com­mu­nity cen­tres will not sell su­gar-sweet­ened bev­er­ages, such as soft drinks and flavoured milks.

Con­trac­tors sell­ing the drinks at coun­cil premises like the Lido Aquatic Cen­tre and Cen­tral En­ergy Trust Arena would not have to im­me­di­ately com­ply, but would be asked to get rid of them un­til con­tracts come up for ne­go­ti­a­tion.

Peo­ple could still bring their own sug­ary drinks from home if they liked.

MidCen­tral Dis­trict Health Board had asked the coun­cil to adopt some kind of su­gar-free pol­icy af­ter en­act­ing its own in 2015.

MidCen­tral health’s Nigel Fitz­patrick said there had been some ad­verse com­ments on the DHB’s in­tranet soon af­ter the ban came in, but most peo­ple had learned to live with it.

Coun­cil­lor Aleisha Rutherford said it was not about re­mov­ing free­dom of choice.

‘‘It’s a step­ping stone in the right di­rec­tion to­wards a health­ier city.’’

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