Sunday, May 31, 2020

‘Dangerously high’ salt levels found in picnic foods

The nation’s typical picnic basket contains “dangerously high” salt levels, according to a new survey by Action on Salt.

The new research, which analysed 555 savoury picnic finger foods available from retailers, found high levels of salt in these products whereby one in four would qualify for a red label on the front of the pack.

As a result, experts from Action on Salt – based at Queen Mary University of London – are calling for immediate compulsory front of pack nutritional labelling on picnic savouries.

“This survey highlights just how easy it is for consumers to unknowingly eat huge amounts of salt and saturated fat hidden in savoury snacks and picnic favourites,” said Mhairi Brown, Nutritionist at Action on Salt.

“Food manufacturers must get on board in our efforts to improve the nation’s health. We found a large variation in the salt content of product categories proving reformulation is easily achievable.

“We want to see the food industry disclosing nutritional information clearly on front of pack on all products so everyone can easily find healthier options.”

Salt targets

In 2018, Public Health England (PHE) released an analysis of the food industry’s progress towards achieving the 2017 targets, which revealed many of the targets had not been met.

Action on Salt similarly found that half of products surveyed were higher in salt than their average salt targets and 17% had more salt than their maximum target.

Graham MacGregor, Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine at Queen Mary and Chair of Action on Salt, said: “Due to inaction by the Department of Health and Social Care and Public Health England in enforcing the 2017 salt reduction targets, the public are still eating more salt than recommended. This is leading to thousands dying or suffering from entirely unnecessary strokes and heart disease.

“Reducing salt is one of the most cost-effective measures to protect health. The time has come for the Secretary of State for Health to resuscitate the UK’s salt reduction programme, helping us to, once again, be world leading rather than trailing behind the rest of the world. The public’s health has suffered long enough.”

Front of pack labelling

The survey found that almost one in three products have no colour-coded front of pack (FoP) labelling. Consumers may also buy products at the deli counter where no nutrition labelling is available.

Of those products without FoP labelling, more than 40% were found to be high in salt, many of which are olive products which do not currently have a specific salt target set by PHE.

There was also a significant variation in the salt content of all product categories surveyed showing reformulation is easily achievable.

Help us maintain our standards of journalism

Readers enjoy our news site but keeping our news up to date and authoritative, without charging readers to view the site is a challenge. Especially now with the Corona Virus measures affecting us all, as many clients have been severely affected and are naturally reducing their spend on advertisements. Given this lack of revenue stream we are calling on the generosity of our readers to help us fill that void and enable our journalists to continue delivering the news that you enjoy.

Unlike many other news sites, we don't have annoying pop ups or charge scandalous prices for events. We also produce printed magazines for each title and we make these freely available to read on line too, for your enjoyment. Often, people have asked why we don't make a charge for viewers to read these magazines and news stories but we feel that would adversely affect our readership/advertisers response rate. But with advertising revenues now severely affected we need your help. So, if you can support our news sites/magazines with either a small donation of even £1, or a subscription to our magazine, which costs from just £31.50 per year, (inc p&P and mailed direct to your door) your generosity will help us weather the current storm and continue in our quest to deliver quality journalism.

We value your readership and your support, as this enables us to continue to provide our regular daily news updates. We've been established over 30 years, during which we've lost count of the numerous recessions and financial meltdowns, and we intend to weather the storms caused by Covid-19. So, every reader contribution, however big or small, is invaluable in helping us to get through this. Please click here to help support your favourite news site/magazine.










Latest news

Nestlé partners with Deliveroo to deliver KitKats direct to consumers

Nestlé has joined forces with Deliveroo’s Essentials delivery platform, allowing consumers to have a variety of chocolate, sweets and snacks delivered to their doors. Via...

Pandemic hits UK food and drink exports

Food and drink exports fell by more than £700 million for Q1 2020 compared with the same period last year as the coronavirus pandemic...

Alternative options for safer bandsaws

Safety is becoming an ever-increasing focus in meat processing and nowhere more so than in the operation of bandsaws which pose one of the...

Regenerative ag platform to launch at food business conference

A new regenerative agriculture platform is set to launch at next week’s Innovation Forum: The Future of Food virtual conference. Franco Costantini, Managing Director at...

Farmers still able to access lending despite coronavirus disruption

Farmers are still able to access lending despite the disruption caused by coronavirus, according to UK Agricultural Finance (UKAF). “There has been a regular flow...

Kite expands product range to support warehouse and logistic operations

Kite Packaging has expanded its pallet and load stability range, providing users with a wide range of solutions for their operations. Load stability is vital...

Related news

Nestlé partners with Deliveroo to deliver KitKats direct to consumers

Nestlé has joined forces with Deliveroo’s Essentials delivery platform, allowing consumers to have a variety of chocolate, sweets and snacks delivered to their doors. Via...

Pandemic hits UK food and drink exports

Food and drink exports fell by more than £700 million for Q1 2020 compared with the same period last year as the coronavirus pandemic...

Alternative options for safer bandsaws

Safety is becoming an ever-increasing focus in meat processing and nowhere more so than in the operation of bandsaws which pose one of the...

Regenerative ag platform to launch at food business conference

A new regenerative agriculture platform is set to launch at next week’s Innovation Forum: The Future of Food virtual conference. Franco Costantini, Managing Director at...

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close