Ipswich sixth in state for fast food chains

1 December 2013 8:04 PM

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IPSWICH has the sixth highest number of chain fast food outlets per capita in the state, according to a new report.

The study from the Heart Foundation Queensland ranked the number of fast food restaurants across the state by population based on the study of 11 major fast food chains.

The Ipswich local government area, with 58 outlets - one for every 2968 people - ranked number six, with the Gold Coast the only area in the south-east to rank higher.

In contrast the rural regions around Ipswich ranked at the end of the list.

Of the 34 council areas in Queensland, the Lockyer Valley ranked 25, the Scenic Rim 29 while the Somerset had the lowest number of outlets per person in the state.

The study examined the number of McDonald's, Hungry Jacks, KFCs, Dominos, Pizza Huts, Eagle Boys, Red Roosters, Nandos, Subways, Oportos and Donut Kings in each council area.

Heart Foundation Queensland health director Rachelle Foreman said research showed the average Queenslander ate out four times a week, mainly at fast food chains.

"A meal combo at a fast food chain can contain almost all of a person's daily kilojoule requirements and, when these fast food outlets are everywhere, we have a problem," she said.

"Close to 60% of people in the Ipswich City Council region are overweight or obese, yet there are 58 major fast food outlets."

Ms Foreman said it was time for all levels of government to act on the spread of fast food.

"Maybe it is time to have a tough discussion about the new solutions and brave actions we need to tackle the obesity epidemic like a tax on sugary drinks, making kilojoule labelling on menus in fast food restaurants mandatory and limiting the spread of fast food outlets through land use planning, including signage regulation," Ms Foreman said.

Booval resident Raj Singh said as a shift worker he appreciated the convenience of fast food, but was wary of the health effects.

"The convenience of it for me, working night shifts, is fantastic," he said.

Source: gympietimes.com.au

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