CASH slams UK manufacturers on salt

24 Mar 2017

With less than nine months to go for food manufacturers and retailers to meet the UK’s 2017 Salt Reduction Targets, Consensus Action on Salt and Health (CASH) says it is alarmed by the lack of action so far.

CASH slams UK manufacturers on salt

With less than nine months to go for food manufacturers and retailers to meet the UK’s 2017 Salt Reduction Targets, a new survey by Consensus Action on Salt and Health (CASH) based at Queen Mary University of London has found that, out of 28 food categories analysed, only ‘bread rolls’ has so far met the 2017 maximum, but not the average, salt target and are alarmed by the lack of action so far by manufacturers and Public Health England (PHE).

The product survey which was conducted using the new and updated FoodSwitch UK app and its SaltSwitch filter, compared two shopping baskets each containing similar everyday food items, but with different amounts of salt. The difference in salt content between the ‘unhealthy’ and ‘healthy’ baskets of products was what CASH describes as a “staggering” 57g of salt.

CASH is now calling for Public Health England to immediately ensure that the 2017 targets are met and that new salt reduction targets for 2020 are set. By dithering, says CASH, PHE are wasting a very cost-effective opportunity to prevent ~14,000 deaths every year, by reducing salt intakes from the current 8g to the recommended 6g, which is predicted to save the NHS a further £3 billion a year ).

“Salt is the forgotten killer,” said Katharine Jenner, Registered Nutritionist and Campaign Director for CASH. “The findings from our FoodSwitch shopping basket survey are alarming and we are shocked to see that many food manufacturers and retailers are still failing to meet the salt reduction targets, despite having had years to work towards them. We congratulate the other, more responsible manufacturers that have successfully achieved them, or are on track to meet them by the end of the year – which shows it is possible. With only nine months to go, action must be taken now.”