Add UN-Salt to injury The latest regulation impacting the Food industry.
More and more people are looking for healthier options when eating out to protect their health. Chefs and cooks can play an important part in creating opportunities for healthier eating when people eat out. Unilever Food Solutions has been on a journey to collaborate with chefs and cooks to improve health and promote longevity since 2009 as part of our global sustainability plan. Offering you, the client, products that are tasty, superior and that make healthier eating the easy choice is part of our heritage. One area in which we have made good strides is in lowering the amount of salt in our products.
Hlanzeka Mpanza RD (SA)
Nutrition and Health - Unilever South Africa
The South Africa Government has received accolades internationally for its ground-breaking salt legislation, which makes the lowering of salt levels in specific food items mandatory. The initial reductions are due on 30 June 2016, with the secondary reductions due in 2019. The new regulations apply to common foods like breakfast cereals and porridges, bread, butter, spreads, gravies, processed meats, soups, savoury snacks and crisps.
South Africa has one of the highest rates of high blood pressure/ hypertension in the world, with 1 in 3 adults believed to be living with the condition and ultimately making South Africans more susceptible to life-threatening diseases such as heart disease and stroke. High salt intake increases the risk of developing high blood pressure. Health recommends that adults eat no more than 5 grams of salt per day. South Africans eat double this recommended amount on average. Getting South Africans to eat the right amount of salt could potentially save our country approximately R 576 million a year in health care subsidies alone.
In 2013, Unilever Food Solutions SA removed 43 tons of salt from our range of stock granules! Since then, we have been continuously reformulating many of our product ranges, as well as reducing the sodium content in them, to improve health. Our affected products are in line to be fully compliant with the upcoming salt legislation on 30 June 2016, when it becomes law. For more information on the new legislation, Foodstuffs, Cosmetics and Disinfectants Act 1972 (Act 54 of 1972) No R214, visit www.health.gov.za