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Can a state-wide public health nutrition strategy make a difference? Evaluation of ‘Eat Well Queensland’. Contact Email – [email protected]

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Can a state-wide public health nutrition strategy make a difference?

Evaluation of‘Eat Well Queensland’

Contact Email – [email protected]

Christina Stubbs1, Corneel Vandelanotte2, Peter Anderson3, Amanda Lee1, Nicky Peberdy4, Aloysa Hourigan5, Deanne Wooden6, Danielle Gallegos7

1 Queensland Health, Australia; 2Central Queensland University, Australia, 3Public Health Association of Australia (Qld), Australia; 4Dietitian’s Association of Australia (Qld), Australia; 5Nutrition Australia (Qld), Australia; 6Heart Foundation (Qld), Australia; 7Queensland University of Technology, Australia

What is it?

Eat Well Queensland 2002-2012: Smart Eating for a Healthier State (EWQ) was developed by the Queensland Public Health Forum in 2002 as a 10-year strategy to improve the health of Queenslanders through better food and nutrition. This study aimed to evaluate the implementation of EWQ and identify future strategic action required. Queensland Health funded a mid-point review of EWQ in 2008, to identify achievements, gaps, barriers and emerging issues associated with EWQ. 31 key stakeholders were interviewed, 83 stakeholders responded to an online survey, 150 stakeholders attended a state-wide practitioner workshop and 209 EWQ-related project reports were assessed.

  • What did it achieve directly?

  • Increased investment in workforce

  • Creation of 137 new positions in the Queensland nutrition workforce.

  • Strong focus on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nutrition

  • Improved monitoring and surveillance

  • Healthy Kids Queensland Nutrition & Physical Activity Survey 2006 of 3691 children aged 7-15

  • Infant and Child Nutrition Survey Queensland 2003

  • Healthy Food Access Basket series monitoring price and availability statewide

  • Increased number of childhood nutrition projects.

  • Breastfeeding health promotion initiative

  • Influenced subsequent strategies and funding

  • Queensland Strategy for Chronic Disease

  • Implementation of A Better Choice Strategy

  • Implementation of Smart Choices Food and Drink Supply Strategy for Queensland Schools

  • High profile state-wide initiatives

  • Go for 2&5 fruit and vegetable promotion

  • Eat Well Be Active

What else has EWQ achieved?

Stablisation of childhood obesity rates

In 2006, 21% of Queensland Children were overweight or obese, the same as in 1995 and 3% less than their counterparts in WA and NSW.

Increase in breastfeeding rates

In 2003 Queensland Health began a campaign to promote optimal infant feeding. Breastfeeding increased between 2003 and 2008 by 1.7% for ever been breastfed within the first 12 months of life, by 5.1% for breastfeeding to one month, by 4.2% for breastfeeding to six months and by 4.4% breastfeeding to 12 months.

Eat Well Queensland Working Group

This is a collaborative working group of NGOs and cross - sector government departments that engages in advocacy and a range of initiatives.


A co-ordinated, well-funded, intersectoral approach to addressing nutrition issues at the broad population level can generate positive health outcomes. Communication and evaluation however are key to ensure longevity and sustainability