The Food and Drink Federation (FDF) has “warmly welcomed” Public Health England (PHE)’s plans to reduce calories in products to combat growing obesity in the UK.
The FDF says that as an organisation that has long advocated an approach to tackling obesity that looks beyond individual nutrients, focusing on calories is the right step.
“It’s encouraging too to see that the government’s renewed focus looks not just at the food and drink bought for consumption at home, but also at takeaways, restaurants and cafés,” said Ian Wright CBE, director general of the FDF. “To be successful in improving the nation’s health, it is also vital that this work delivers appropriate, clear and easily understandable calorie messages for shoppers and consumers.”
Over the last five years, FDF members have reduced calorie content in the average basket by 5.5%. PHE has set the goal to the food and drink industry to reduce calories in products consumed by families by 20% by 2024.
It said that it will work with organisations to create category guidelines to help achieve this target, which will be published in mid-2019.
“We look forward to working collaboratively with our partners including Public Health England to help shape the programme,” said Wright.
School caterer abm catering has supported PHE’s ambitions to reduce portion control in its latest programme but states that lowering calorie intake isn’t always the answer.
“Healthy eating doesn’t just mean lowering your calorie intake, although that is part of it, it means eating a variety of nutrient dense foods in the right amounts in order to maintain good health, improve general wellbeing and reduce the risk of health conditions,” it said.