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Implementation lessons for school food policies and marketing restrictions in the Philippines: a qualitative policy analysis

Reeve, Erica, Thow, Anne Marie, Bell, Colin, Engelhardt, Katrin, Gamolo-Naliponguit, Ella Cecilia, Go, John Juliard and Sacks, Gary 2018, Implementation lessons for school food policies and marketing restrictions in the Philippines: a qualitative policy analysis, Globalization and health, vol. 14, pp. 1-14, doi: 10.1186/s12992-017-0320-y.

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Title Implementation lessons for school food policies and marketing restrictions in the Philippines: a qualitative policy analysis
Author(s) Reeve, Erica
Thow, Anne Marie
Bell, ColinORCID iD for Bell, Colin orcid.org/0000-0003-2731-9858
Engelhardt, Katrin
Gamolo-Naliponguit, Ella Cecilia
Go, John Juliard
Sacks, GaryORCID iD for Sacks, Gary orcid.org/0000-0001-9736-1539
Journal name Globalization and health
Volume number 14
Article ID 8
Start page 1
End page 14
Total pages 14
Publisher BMC
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2018-01-23
ISSN 1744-8603
Keyword(s) Food marketing
Nutrition policy implementation
School food policy
Summary Background
The school environment can enhance children’s skills, knowledge and behaviours in relation to healthy eating. However, in many countries, unhealthy foods are commonly available in schools, and children can be exposed to aggressive marketing by the food industry. Taking the perspective of policymakers, this study aimed to identify barriers and enablers to effective school food policy development and implementation in the Philippines.

Methods
In May 2016, semi-structured interviews were conducted with 21 policymakers and stakeholders involved in school food policymaking and implementation in the Philippines. The Health Policy Analysis Triangle was used to identify interview questions and to guide the thematic analysis. These included the political and socio-environmental context, strengths and limitations of existing policy content, roles and behaviours of actors, implementation processes, policy outcomes, and opportunities to improve policy coherence.

Results
The Department of Education’s policy ‘Orders’ represented a relatively strong policy framework for the education sector of the Philippines. However, a lack of human and financial resources for implementation, planning, and policy enforcement limited the impact of the policy on the healthiness of school food provision. Ambiguity in policy wording allowed a wide interpretation of the foods eligible to be provided in schools, and led to difficulties in effective monitoring and enforcement. Food companies used existing relationships with schools to promote their brands and compromise the establishment of a stronger food policy agenda. We found a motivated group of actors engaging in policy-oriented learning and advocating for a stronger policy alternative so as to improve the school food environment.

Conclusions
The adoption of policy mechanisms being used to promote healthy dietary practices in the school setting will be strengthened by more robust implementation planning processes, and resources to support implementation and enforcement. Policymakers should ensure policy language clearly and unequivocally promotes healthier food and beverage options. Steps should be taken to achieve policy coherence by ensuring the objectives of one agency or institution are not undermining that of any others. Where there is reliance on the private sector for school resources, safeguards should be established to protect against conflicts of interest.
Language eng
DOI 10.1186/s12992-017-0320-y
Field of Research 111104 Public Nutrition Intervention
1117 Public Health And Health Services
Socio Economic Objective 920411 Nutrition
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2018, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30109682

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Population Health
Open Access Collection
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.