About

The Nanny State Index (NSI) is a league table of the worst places in the European Union to eat, drink, smoke and vape. The initiative was launched in March 2016 and was a media hit right across Europe. It is masterminded and led by IEA’s Christopher Snowdon with partners from all over Europe. The 2017 edition of the index was revealed during a full day conference in Brussels and featured high level discussions and debates between MEPs, industry experts, think tankers and regulators about the effects of regulation on health outcomes.

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Categories


Criteria

This category is made up of five categories with a total score of 100.

Taxation. This includes any taxes (in excess of normal sales tax) placed on food products, soft drinks or specific ingredients. Scores are given according to the number of products taxed and the size of the tax. Up to 10 points for soft drinks and up to 25 points for food = maximum of 35 points.

Advertising restrictions. Up to 25 points are awarded according to the scope and severity of advertising restrictions.

Ingredient Limits. Up to 25 points are awarded for state-sanctioned limits on how ingredients can be used in food.

Energy drinks. Some countries regulate caffeinated cold drinks (‘energy drinks’) more severely than traditional, caffeinated hot drinks. 5 points are awarded for a total ban on sales to people aged under 18 years. Up to 4 points are awarded for specific taxes on caffeinated drinks.

Vending machines. Up to 10 points are awarded for bans on vending machines and/or bans on certain food/drink products being sold from vending machines. Scores depend on the scope of the ban (eg. schools, hospitals) and the number products affected.


Food & Drink

least free less free freer freest
 Country Taxes (35) Vending machines (10) Energy drinks (5) Advertising (25) Mandatory limits (25) TOTAL (100)
1 Hungary 24 0 0 0 4 28
2 France 7 4 0 0 0 11
3 Latvia 0 0 5 3 2 10
4 UK 0 1 0 9 0 10
5 Lithuania 0 1 5 3 0 9
6 Belgium 2 0 0 0 6 8
7 Denmark 3 0 0 0 5 8
8 Finland 7 0 0 0 0 7
9 Ireland 0 0 0 7 0 7
10 Bulgaria 0 0 0 0 6 6
11 Greece 2 0 0 0 4 6
12 Slovenia 0 4 0 0 0 4
13 Sweden 0 0 0 3 0 3
14 Austria 0 0 0 0 2 2
15 Italy 0 2 0 0 0 2
16 Poland 0 2 0 0 0 2
17 Portugal 0 0 0 0 2 2
18 Croatia 0 0 0 0 0 0
19 Cyprus 0 0 0 0 0 0
20 Czech Republic 0 0 0 0 0 0
21 Estonia 0 0 0 0 0 0
22 Germany 0 0 0 0 0 0
23 Luxembourg 0 0 0 0 0 0
24 Malta 0 0 0 0 0 0
25 Netherlands 0 0 0 0 0 0
26 Romania 0 0 0 0 0 0
27 Slovakia 0 0 0 0 0 0
28 Spain 0 0 0 0 0 0

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