Asda stresses low-salt credentials
Supermarket chain supports drive to cut salt from processed food
January 29 2003
Asda has taken more than 1,000 tonnes of salt out of its customers’ diets over the past four years, which it claims makes it the UK’s leading retailer in the drive to reduce salt intake among consumers.
To mark Salt Awareness Day, Asda announced that that it has exceeded its targets since its salt reduction programme began in October 1998. Last year, Asda launched an own-label food pledge which, along with other health related points, aimed to reduce fat, salt and sugar by a further 10 per cent by the end of 2004.
The range involved briefing over 600 suppliers and reviewing over 7,000 products, with no compromise to price, quality or shelf life. Asda first reduced the sodium content in 3000 own brand foods in 1999 by 12 per cent, and has since worked to further lower levels of added salt in its ongoing product development.
Health body Consensus Action on Salt and Health launched the annual Salt Awareness Day in 1998 to highlight the high levels of hidden salt found in processed foods and to emphasise how salt intakes can be reduced. Asda’s support for the event emphasises the increasing emphasis supermarkets are placing on providing healthier options for customers concerned about their diets.
A high salt intake can lead to high blood pressure, a key factor in stroke and heart attacks, and is believed to aggravate conditions such as asthma, osteoporosis and kidney disease.
The emphasis of Salt Awareness Day this year is the impact of salt on children’s diets. Asda launches its More For Kids own-brand children’s next month, and has used its experience of reducing salt in food products when developing the range.
ASDA nutritionist Sue Malcolm said: “We’ve demonstrated that food can be healthy without compromising on taste or quality and customer feedback has been really positive.”
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