POTATO PROCESSOR Aviko has slashed the salt content of over 10 of its most popular potato products.
Between 2011 and 2012 the company removed 16 tonnes of salt from products so they meet Food Standards Agency (FSA) guidelines.
The Food Standards Agency 2012 guidelines stipulate a maximum level of 300mg of sodium or 0.75g of salt per 100g serving of pre-prepared potato products; many of Aviko’s products fall below even its recommended average content of 195mg.
This salt removal drive chimes with a report last year, commissioned by Aviko, which found that 42% of those in high street outlets, pubs and full-service restaurants are actively offering reduced salt options on menus. Allied to this, a further 14% of respondents said they were planning to do so in the near future.
Next week CASH’s (Consensus Action on Salt & Health) Salt Awareness Week returns for its 14th year. Mohammed Essa, Aviko general manager UK and Ireland said the company will be helping caterers “make the right choices” when planning menus. “Cutting salt does not mean taste has to be sacrificed for health,” he added. A spokesman said the company was also looking “much more closely” at the government’s Public Health Responsibility Deal and how it ties in with its European CSR policy.
Last year, the government added three new salt pledges to the deal for the catering sector. Developed by the British Hospitality Association (BHA), the pledges commit companies to a 15% reduction in salt used in their kitchens, ensuring at least 50% of the products they procure meet the 2012 targets (and increasing further over time) and/or reformulating the dishes they serve to their customers to cut salt, prioritising those which currently make the greatest contribution to salt intake.