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UK gets Sugar Smart

Bristol Sport Foundation has been backing the Sugar Smart campaign for the last 18 months, with high-profile ambassadors from Bristol City, Bristol Rugby and Bristol Flyers.

The ground-breaking sugar tax on soft drinks came into force in the UK on Friday, with manufacturers having to pay a levy on the high-sugar drinks they sell.

Ministers and campaigners believe it has already proved to be a success with many firms reducing sugar content ahead of the change. But others say it is still too early to judge the impact.

Leading brands such as Fanta, Ribena and Lucozade have cut the sugar content of drinks, but Coca-Cola has not.

The introduction of the levy means the UK joins a small handful of nations, including Mexico, France and Norway, which have introduced similar taxes.

It follows some impressive community work from the Bristol Flyers, whose Health Squad programme is a needs-driven health programme which the club have created to empower children with the knowledge and understanding to be able to make positive lifestyle decisions as they progress through life.

Community development officer, Jenny Lewis, said: “We hope that through the Bristol Flyers Health Squad programme, we can help youngsters and their families to improve their health and quality of life across the City of Bristol.”

The programme takes the form of two hours of curriculum delivery a week for six weeks, the first hour is classroom-based covering a range of health issues and the second hour is a practical basketball session.

The practical component of the programme is delivered in terms by the Flyers' professional players so not only do the children get to learn and develop their coordination, decision making, ability to work as part of a team, agility and ball handling skills, they also get the added bonus of being taught by someone who plays at the top level in the country.

Find out more about the Sugar Smart campaign here.