Junk food off menu in Pacific paradise

THE next time you holiday in Vanuatu, don't expect to see any M&Ms or Mars Bars in every hotel minibar.

The Pacific nation's northern Torba province is set to ban foreign junk food from bungalows and hotels.

Why? Because Western junk food is rotting the teeth of Vanuatu's "pretty young girls”, Torba's head of tourism and community leader, Father Luc Dini, told The Guardian. And they want it gone.

"At the moment we have an infiltration of junk food from overseas,” Fr Dini said.

"In other provinces that have adopted western diets you see pretty young girls but when they smile they have rotten teeth, because the sugar has broken down their teeth.

"We don't want that to happen here and we don't want to develop the illnesses that come with a western junk food diet.”

Fr Dini has ordered the province's tourism bungalows to serve guests only locally grown, organic food, and he plans to pass a local law banning all foreign food within the next two years. He said imported rice, lollies, tinned fish and biscuits were popular imports in the province.

"It is easy to boil noodles or rice, but they have almost no nutritional value and there is no need to eat imported food when we have so much local food grown organically on our islands,” Fr Dini said. - NEWS CORP