New television advertising rules will ban all junk food adverts before 9pm in the UK following a public consultation.

Adverts of foods high in fat, salt and sugar all come under the ban with the new rules applying to TV and UK on-demand programmes

The newly introduced regulations will come into effect at the end of next year.

One in three children leave primary school overweight or obese, with obesity-related illnesses costing the NHS £6 billion a year.

Public Health Minister, Jo Churchill, said: “We are committed to improving the health of our children and tackling obesity.

“The content youngsters see can have an impact on the choices they make and habits they form.

“With children spending more time online it is vital we act to protect them from unhealthy advertising.

“These measures form another key part of our strategy to get the nation fitter and healthier by giving them the chance to make more informed decisions when it comes to food.

“We need to take urgent action to level up health inequalities. This action on advertising will help to wipe billions off the national calorie count and give our children a fair chance of a healthy lifestyle.”

A total of 79% of respondents to the consultation supported the new watershed on TV while 74% agreed with the introduction of further HFSS advertising restrictions online.

The ban arrives after analysis from September 2019 showed that almost half (47.6%) of all food adverts shown over the month on ITV1, Channel 4, Channel 5 and Sky1 were for products high in fat, salt and sugar, rising to nearly 60% between 6pm and 9pm.

Research from OFCOM also suggests that children’s viewing peaks are in the hours after school, with the largest number of child viewers being between 6pm and 9pm.