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Overall, a delay of one year to the introduction of mandatory nutrition labelling will have significant adverse impacts on health in the community.
- Between 320 and 460 people will die from diet-related diseases, every year mandatory labelling is delayed.
- The cost to the health system - expenditure from all sources - is in the range of $47 million to $67 million for every year mandatory labelling is delayed.
- The value of life, as measured by health economists, will diminish by $341 million to $486 million for every year mandatory labelling is delayed - an immense personal cost.
- This methodology has adopted several very conservative assumptions. It indicates the likely minimum costs of delaying mandatory nutrition labelling.
- Diet-related risk factors account for about 25% of Australia and New Zealand' s burden of disease.
- From the experience of the US, we expect a significant proportion of currently unlabelled food products to show some poor nutrition qualities when nutrition labelling is mandatory.
- From the US experience, we expect mandatory labelling will result in a significant substitution away from least healthy food products, towards the most healthy food products.
- In addition, delaying mandatory labelling will mean insufficient warning of allergens in food products, placing vulnerable consumers at unnecessary risk.
- Other warnings and advisory statements will be more difficult for consumers to interpret.
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