The food network has today published its new salt strategy, which sets out the direction of travel we plan to take to make further progress in reducing salt in the nation’s diet.
The approach is purposively designed to take a holistic approach to salt reduction. It will enable everyone in the food industry, health organisations and wider to play their full part.
The strategy comprises four key areas:
- Revising the 2012 salt targets for over 80 categories of food by the end of the year to encourage companies to reformulate recipes;
- Encouraging the out of home sector to do more – by setting new maximum targets for the most popular dishes;
- Asking companies to use their influence in the market – through promotional and other activities – to encourage people to choose lower salt options; and
- Getting more companies across the food industry to sign up to salt reduction.
Over the course of the year we will work to revise the reformulation targets. Our initial focus will be to develop maximum salt targets per serving on the most popular foods that are served by the out of home sector – by spring, including sandwiches and chips. We will complete the development work for the full range of new targets by the end of the year and we will include, for the first time, maximum salt levels in new products.
Welcoming today’s publication of the new strategy, Public Health Minister Anna Soubry said:
“Today our typical shopping basket contains much less salt than it did 10 years ago but more needs to be done to help lower these levels even further.
“Through the Responsibility Deal, we are working with the food industry to make sure people are given healthier options with less salt in their favourite foods. The voluntary approach is working and we have already seen results in our everyday foods, but to get the greatest impact, we need more companies pledging to reduce salt levels, particularly in the catering and take away sector.”
Responsibility Deal Food Network chair Dr Susan Jebb said:
“It’s essential we maintain momentum in our efforts to reduce salt in our diet if we are to prevent the many thousands of premature deaths each year from stroke and heart disease linked to eating too much salt.
“Today is the start of the next phase of the salt reduction work. This strategy combines work to develop new targets for reformulation, with action to urge more companies to play their full part and renewed efforts to encourage consumers to do more to reduce the salt we’re eating.”