Easter weekend could see youngsters gorging on enough sugar to seriously damage their health.
A time of celebration, many people associate Easter with feasting, and more feasting.
As one of Christianity’s oldest holidays its religious implications are vast, and include people returning to foods sworn-off during Lent.
However, for anyone with a sweet tooth and a penchant for chocolate, Easter is also a time chocolaty indulgences.
Easter: an egg-sellent time for sweets
With egg hunts and the Easter Bunny revving the imagination and appetite, children make faithful enthusiasts of this Spring-time celebration.
As such, chocolate is a major commodity, the consumption of which may be helping the confectionery industry, but not health.
Accordingly, Britain makes up a large wedge of the European market, ingesting almost a third of chocolate.
Furthermore, the United Kingdom ranks fifth in the world for largest consumption of sweets per capita.
Research shows that last year each person ate up to an average of 23.4 lbs of sugary goodness. This figure is roughly the same weight as a seal pup at birth.
Thus, the UK devours more sweets than any other country in the EU.
In regards to the health implications of this lifestyle habit, high sugar intake relates to increasing the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Alarmingly, diabetes is more deadly than AIDS and breast cancer combined.
Throughout the UK 3.5 million have the disease, which correlates to one in 16 individuals. Worldwide, the numbers are just as staggering.
Presently, one in 11 people, or 415 million suffer from diabetes. This number is predicted to increase to a chilling 642 million by as soon as 2040.
Is that a wrap for packaging?
In light of these statistics, the meteoric rise in sugar consumption is unarguably a complicated discussion. People enjoy sweets and chocolate, and the confectionery industry benefits from this consumption.
Yet, this rampant consumption is leading to a prevalent and damaging health risk.
In light of this dissonance, should chocolate manufacturers stress the dangers of extreme amounts of sugar intake on their packaging?
Just as cigarette manufacturers have to stress the risks of smoking on their packaging, should governing health bodies hold confectionery companies to the same standards?
Due to the hazards associated with a diet heavy in sweets, perhaps overt health messages on packaging could strike a balance between giving consumers what they want, and social responsibility from influential confectionery companies.
The effects of this method could prove to be especially instrumental during festive periods, where people of all backgrounds understandably choose to indulge in a seemingly harmless vice as a form of celebration.
While consumers are held accountable for their spending habits, enabling an informed decision falls to the industry.
However, the question remains: should packaging companies be asked to increase awareness of sugar consumption on their wrappers?