In case you missed it, The Children's Food Campaign have, since 2003 been running a campaign called "Chuck Snacks off the Checkout", calling for an end to the promotion of unhealthy food and drink products at supermarket checkout points and also in non-food outlets like HMV, New Look, W.H.Smith and Superdrug. A recent survey has found that instead of decreasing, the trend has, in fact increased. Obesity in children has increased too - though sweets at the checkout are obviously not the only reason for this.
Imagine, then, that the supermarkets listen to The Children's Food Campaigners and others, and remove the sweets. What would they replace them with? This is where my modest proposal comes in.
WHY NOT REPLACE THEM WITH CHILDREN'S BOOKS?
Is that such a stupid idea?
I realise that there are well-rehearsed arguments to be had over things like discounting and other broader matters about books in supermarkets versus independent bookshops, but that's not my point here. Helping literacy, getting books (any books) into the hands of children who might not otherwise ever visit an independent bookshop is surely better than feeding them yet another packet of Percy Pigs or Haribo. The supermarkets could even, as Sainsburys did some years ago in conjunction with Walker Books, commission their own series.
Maybe you agree - maybe you disagree. I'd really like to hear what all of you who read this blog regularly have to say. I'd also like to know if Asda, Sainsburys and Tesco and others have an opinion about my modest proposal. If we get a real debate going in the comments, that would be a start. Will you join in?
Lucy's new picture book, Bear's Best Friend, is published by Bloomsbury
"A charming story about the magic of friendship which may bring a tear to your eye" Parents in Touch
"The language is a joy…thoughtful and enjoyable" Armadillo Magazine.
"Coats's ebullient, sympathetic story is perfectly matched by Sarah Dyer's warm and witty illustrations." The Times
Her latest series for 7-9s, Greek Beasts and Heroes is out now from Orion Children's Books.
Lucy blogs at An Awfully Big Blog Adventure on the 19th of every month
Join Lucy's Facebook Fanpage
Follow Lucy on Twitter
Lucy is represented by Sophie Hicks at Ed Victor Ltd