The Calorie Reduction Pledge.
Coca-Cola, Mars and Asda are three of a number of brands and retailers that have made the pledge to reduce calories in their food.
The idea is to cut five billion calories from the countries diet. Health Secretary Andrew Lansley, says: “We all have a role to play – from individuals to public, private and non-governmental organisations – if we are going to cut five billion calories from our national diet. It is an ambitious challenge but the Responsibility Deal has made a great start.”
Details of the pledges were published in Marketing Week this week. Here is what we can expect from the big retailers and brands.
“The Pledges include:
- Asda to develop a reduced calorie brand will contain at least 30% fewer calories than their “Chosen By You” range.
- Coca-Cola to reduce the calories in some of its soft drinks brands by at least 30% by 2014.
- Mars will cap the calories of their chocolate items to 250 calories per portion by the end of 2013.
- Morrisons to launch a range of healthier products developed by their chefs and nutritionists. More than 300 lines will be introduced.
- Hovis and Mr Kipling maker Premier Foods to reduce calories in one third of their sales by the end of 2014 and at least 30% of new products will be lower calorie choices.
- Subway has committed to offer five out of their nine “low fat range subs” as part of their £3 lunch offer.
- Tesco to expand its “Eat, Live and Enjoy” range of low-calorie meals and is making it easier for shoppers to spot low-calorie options through its “Green Ping” labels.
Marks & Spencer, Waitrose, Kerry Foods, Kraft, Nestle, PepsiCo, Unilever, Beefeater and contract caterer Compass have also signed up to the calorie reduction pledge.
Despite signing up many of the biggest food manufacturers and retailers, the government has not secured agreements with fast-food chains such as McDonald’s and KFC on calorie reduction.”
This information got me thinking about the nation’s diet and how we rely on trust of food retailers.
So the aim is to reduce calorie content of foods. Great idea in principle. It makes me wonder if this will cause issues with a reduction in the food quality. They will most certainly add in extra ingredients to make the foods taste good/better. So the result is a reduction in the calories but are they altering the quality of the food in the process?
What short cuts will they take to ensure they do cut the calories? What impact will that have on our health as a nation?
Are the government focusing in the right area to cut the calories?
How would you tackle the rise in calorie consumption and consequently, the rise in obesity levels?
A few thoughts I had:
- Invest in better food labelling and ensure every retailer and brand abide by the rules
- Ensure all food products contain the quality and quantity of products they state on the labels
- Educate people around food, the type of foods they should be eating and the ones they should steer away from
- Educate people around what they need to look out for on labels and in the food
- Ensure foods are cleaned up: make sure there is less rubbish in the foods available
- Ban certain foods, additives, preservatives etc. especially the ones that are known carcinogens.
Tell me your thoughts on the subject: email me firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment below!
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