A deadly epidemic of obesity is spreading across the world, from the most affluent societies to places where it coexists with serious hunger and food shortages. In 2004, the Journal of Public Health Policy published a special section on Legal Approaches to the Obesity Epidemic. Relying on the work of our Editorial Board member Marion Nestle and the Public Health Advocacy Institute, this collection of papers shifted the responsibility (and blame) from individuals who eat too much and exercise too little, to an increasingly powerful and concentrated food industry that, in quest of profits, markets its inexpensive, tasty, and convenient products in greater and greater quantities – often more than the population can consume and remain healthy.Many articles in subsequent issues picked up on this theme, thus the Journal of Public Health Policy has published extensively on public health aspects of overweight and obesity globally. The articles in the Food & Obesity Collection consider how societal and institutional change can reduce and prevent the serious health consequences of overweight.Anthony Robbins, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, USAPhyllis Freeman, Professor Emerita, University of Massachusetts Boston, USA

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Obesity as collateral damage: A call for papers on the Obesity Epidemic
Anthony Robbins and Marion Nestle

Legal Approaches to the Obesity Epidemic: An Introduction
Ben Kelley and Jason A Smith

The Obesity Epidemic in the United States
Allison C Morrill and Christopher D Chinn

Food Marketing to Children in the Context of a Marketing Maelstrom
Susan E Linn

Legislative Approaches to the Obesity Epidemic
Rachel I Weiss, Cheryl L Hayne and Jason A Smith

Regulating Environments to Reduce Obesity
Cheryl L Hayne, Patricia A Moran and Mary M Ford

Private Enforcement: Litigation as a Tool to Prevent Obesity
Richard A Daynard, P Tim Howard and Cara L Wilking

Confronting the Epidemic: The Need for Global Solutions
Neville J Rigby, Shiriki Kumanyika and W Phillip T James

Improving the food environment in UK schools: Policy opportunities and challenges

Anu Devi, Rebecca Surender, Michael Rayner

Global health diplomacy for obesity prevention: Lessons from tobacco control
Chantal Blouin, Laurette Dubé

Breakfast cereal industry pledges to self-regulate advertising to youth: Will they improve the marketing landscape?
Marlene B. Schwartz, Craig Ross, Jennifer L. Harris, David H. Jernigan, Michael Siegel, Joshua Ostroff, Kelly D. Brownell

High-fat milk consumption in Iran: Lessons from a recent policy affecting public health
Sima Rafiei, Sina Abdollahzade, Ali Akbar Zeinaloo, Hoda Mojazi Amiri

Viewpoint: Childhood undernutrition: A failing global priority
Kristine Peterson

A case study of the New York City trans-fat story for international application
Andy S. L. Tan

State Sales Tax Rates for Soft Drinks and Snacks Sold through Grocery Stores and Vending Machines, 2007
Jamie F. Chriqui, Shelby S. Eidson, Hannalori Bates, Shelly Kowalczyk, Frank J. Chaloupka

The Impact of Corporate Practices on Health: Implications for Health Policy
Nicholas Freudenberg, Sandro Galea

Portion Sizes and Obesity: Responses of Fast-Food Companies
Lisa R. Young, Marion Nestle

Food Industry Promises to Address Childhood Obesity: Preliminary Evaluation
Alexandra Lewin, Lauren Lindstrom, Marion Nestle

The Effects of Obesity on Doctor-diagnosed Chronic Diseases in Africa: Empirical Results from Senegal and South Africa
Abay Asfaw

Use the Law to Address Obesity?
Diane S. Mackey, R. Jean Hine

Advanced policy options to regulate sugar-sweetened beverages to support public health
Jennifer L Pomeranz