News

Action on Salt: salt content of non-meat alternatives is "excessive"

24 Oct 2018

The UK’s Action on Salt pressure group has exposed what it claims are excessive amounts of salt in ‘healthy’ processed meat alternatives and demand urgent action from Public Health England.

Action on Salt: salt content of non-meat alternatives is excessive

The UK’s Action on Salt pressure group has exposed what it claims are excessive amounts of salt in ‘healthy’ processed meat alternatives and demanded urgent action from Public Health England.

It says that 28% of all products surveyed are higher in salt than their maximum salt targets - due to be met by 31st December 2017, and that meat free burgers contain on average more salt than meat burgers (0.75g/serve v 0.89g/serve). 20% of products are said to have have no front of pack colour-coded labelling.

This finding, it claims, reaffirms how ineffective the voluntary salt targets are due to complete lack of monitoring and guidance from Public Health England.

Of the 157 supermarket meat alternative products surveyed, the highest average salt content per 100g was found in meat free bacon (2.03g/100g) and meat free sliced meat (1.56g/100g). Per portion, on average vegetarian kievs were the saltiest (1.03g) – saltier than a large portion of McDonald’s frie - followed by meat free sausages (0.96g) and, surprisingly, plain meat-free pieces and fillets (0.87g) – as salty as three portions of salted peanuts.

Action on Salt last surveyed vegetarian alternatives in 2008 and while the average salt content per 100g has decreased for both meat-free sausages and meat-free burgers, it notes that the average salt content per portion of meat-free burgers has increased from 0.80g to 0.89g.

Action on Salt’s survey of real beef burgers from leading retailers revealed that their average salt content per serving - 0.75g - was lower than that of meat free burgers at 0.89g per serve– saltier than a portion of salt and vinegar crisps.

32 of the 154 (20%) products included in the survey had no front of pack colour-coded labelling. Disappointingly, the organisation said, only three of all products surveyed were low in salt with 0.3g per 100g or less.

As Action on Salt says it has consistently shown in all product surveys, there is a large variation in the salt content of products within the same category. Most meat-free categories had at least a 50% difference in salt content between the saltiest and least salty products. Meat-free mince had the biggest variation with an 83% difference.

This, the organisation said, once again highlights that it is very easy to make products with less salt and so all manufacturers should aim to reduce salt in their products, not just the responsible few.

Related news

Wile Women embraces perimenopause ecosystem with support and education

Wile Women embraces perimenopause ecosystem with support and education

6 Oct 2023

Wile Women, a US-based direct-to-consumer supplement brand, offers “naturopathic” products designed to address women’s mental health and aims to break the stigma surrounding perimenopause.

Read more 
Lahori Zeera’s spiced soft drinks ‘resonate with the Indian taste palette’

Lahori Zeera’s spiced soft drinks ‘resonate with the Indian taste palette’

5 Oct 2023

Indian soda brand Lahori Zeera is on a mission to become the largest non-cola drinks brand in the country with its fruit-based soda drinks, available in flavours such as tamarind, lemon, and black pepper. “The ethnic beverages market in India is unders...

Read more 
Redistributing unwanted food to those in need: A cost- and hassle-free solution

Redistributing unwanted food to those in need: A cost- and hassle-free solution

4 Oct 2023

London-based charity City Harvest is solving the longstanding issues of food waste and hunger by providing food businesses with a convenient and cost-free solution to redistributing food waste.

Read more 
Advocacy groups condemn EU Commission for backpedalling on animal rights

Advocacy groups condemn EU Commission for backpedalling on animal rights

3 Oct 2023

Amid rumours that the EU may abandon its plans to improve animal welfare in farming and end the use of cages, many stakeholders have condemned this possibility and urged the EU to reconsider.

Read more 
Smuckers, Hostess deal latest food industry mega merger

Smuckers, Hostess deal latest food industry mega merger

2 Oct 2023

The J.M. Smucker Co. is to acquire fellow American snack company Hostess Brands for approximately $5.6 billion, following several other high-profile mergers in food and snacks so far in 2023.

Read more 
Poland and Ukraine attempt to resolve grain dispute

Poland and Ukraine attempt to resolve grain dispute

29 Sep 2023

Poland and Ukraine have begun talks to try to resolve a dispute regarding the ban on Kyiv’s grain imports that prompted Kyiv to file a lawsuit to the World Trade Organization.

Read more 
HN-Novatech launches seaweed heme ingredient in Singapore

HN-Novatech launches seaweed heme ingredient in Singapore

28 Sep 2023

Korean food technology company HN-Novatech secures $4 million in funding and has unveiled a proprietary seaweed heme ingredient for healthy plant-based alternatives in Singapore.

Read more 
The EU may be set to scrap its sustainability commitments

The EU may be set to scrap its sustainability commitments

27 Sep 2023

A speech delivered by President Ursula von der Leyen last week inferred that the EU could be drawing back on its commitments to create a more sustainable and healthier food system.

Read more 
Nutri-Score will be implemented in the Netherlands in 2024

Nutri-Score will be implemented in the Netherlands in 2024

20 Sep 2023

Nutri-Score will be adopted as the official – but voluntary – food choice logo in the Netherlands from 1 January 2024, the Dutch government confirms. How will this impact the industry?

Read more 
Proudly made in China: Tips to tap into the <em>guochao</em> trend with success

Proudly made in China: Tips to tap into the guochao trend with success

19 Sep 2023

Thanks to the guochao trend, Chinese consumers see ‘Made in China’ products as trendy and Western brands are capitalising on this with regional flavours or Chinese-style branding. But guochao has become more nuanced and consumers are increasingly wise ...

Read more