An independent report examining ways of further reducing salt in foods has been published by the British Retail Consortium (BRC) and Food and Drink Federation (FDF).
The project, undertaken by Leatherhead Food Research (LFR), set out to identify suitable techniques to reduce salt which would also address the related problems of products having a shorter shelf-life or lacking taste or texture.
The report shows potential future methods exist but need either considerably more scientific development, including establishing their safety for consumption, or have yet to be tried in actual foods.
British Retail Consortium deputy food director, Andrea Martinez-Inchausti, said: "The UK leads the world in salt reduction and we're approaching the limit of what is currently possible. Producing foods with even less salt but which go off too quickly or lack flavour could simply result in consumers switching to higher salt products. That's no solution."
Action group offers a different view
Consensus Action on Salt and Health (Cash) have stated a different view.
Cash believe that FDF and BRC have completely wrongly claimed that ‘salt reduction is reaching it’s limit’ and have cited ‘technical difficulties’ in meeting salt targets in eight (out of 30) categories of food, based on a report submitted by Leatherhead Food Research.
Professor Graham MacGregor of the Wolfson Institute, and chairman of Cash “We must not be put off by a ‘dinosaur like’ approach from the BRC and FDF. The UK is fortunate to have some of the leading food companies in the world, and in collaboration with them we will reduce salt intake to a maximum of 6g per day. This will prevent 36,000 strokes and heart attacks every year, 18,000 of which would have been fatal, while also saving the NHS billions of pounds a year.”
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