Channel 4 bosses say Jamie's junk food ad ban would cost industry £200m

Alys Key
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Jamie Oliver thinks pre-watershed junk food ads should be banned (Source: Getty)

Channel 4 bosses have said a ban on TV advertising for junk food could cost the industry £200m, just days after the network's star chef Jamie Oliver called for the measure.

The 'Naked Chef' has called for advertising for high fat, salt and sugar (HFSS) foods to be banned before the watershed (9pm).

But chief commercial officer Jonathan Allan said this morning that an HFSS ban could negatively impact the TV ad market to the tune of £200m, according to Campaign.

"The fear is if there’s only TV regulation, that money just goes elsewhere – onto YouTube and Facebook. It doesn’t actually solve the problem," he said. "It’s a serious financial risk for broadcasters."

Read more: Advertising watchdog refers Viagogo to National Trading Standards

Meanwhile new boss Alex Mahon urged the government to carry out "a full, fact-based consultation" on the proposals before rushing into a decision.

The executives were speaking at the presentation of Channel 4's annual report, which revealed a dip of three per cent in revenue to £1.17bn in 2017.

Oliver launched the campaign to restrict junk food advertising earlier this year and has since gained the support of Nicola Sturgeon and Jeremy Corbyn.

His other recent proposals to tackle the obesity crisis include banning 2-for-1 pizza deals.

Read more: Government threatens further action to reduce sugar content

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