The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India’s (FSSAI) Eat Right Movement has received support from fifteen major food companies who have pledged to reduce the amounts of fat, salt and sugar in their products.
These companies include Britannia, Bikarnerwala, Kraftheinz, Bagrrys, Delmonte, Haldirams, ITC, Kellogs, Marico, Mapro, MTR, Nestle, Patanjali, Hindustan Unilever, and Weikfield.
Reduced sodium, sugars and saturated fats
Britannia has pledged that it will reduce sugar and sodium by five percent per serve size in its products over the next three years. HUL has pledged that 75 percent of its products will meet salt levels to enable intakes of 5g per day, by 2020. This is the recommended benchmark given by the World Health Organization (WHO).
“Nestle is already working on ways to reduce sodium, sugars and saturated fats from its products. We’re committed to an average six percent reduction in added sugar, an average 10 percent reduction in salt and about 2.5 percent reduction in total fat in our relevant product categories by 2020,” chairman and managing director of Nestle India, Suresh Narayanan, told the publication.
ITC, in its pledge, has stated that it is targeting a phased total reduction of 10 percent from their current levels of salt in three-fourths of its snack and instant noodle products by 2023. Kellogg India has pledged to reduce an average of 10-15 percent of sugar and 10-30 percent of sodium in its ready-to-eat cereals by 2020.
“Patanjali is ready to reformulate its product to fit in the required levels of salt sugar and fats. It added that it will be developing a sugar-free chyawanprash for diabetic patients and will also try and cut down sugar levels by 3-5 percent in its existing chyawanprash product,” Acharya Balkrishna from Patanjali told the publication.
“The battle between heart and brain”
Pawan Kumar Agarwal, CEO of FSSAI, said, “It was to inculcate the habit of consuming Thoda Kam, fight the battle between heart and brain and to limit the intake of fat, salt, sugar in people’s diets. The growing consensus amongst industry members on the importance of promoting eating right was evidenced by the commitments made by companies across the food chain,”
“While the edible oil industry, bakeries, and halwais committed to phase out trans-fats by 2022 (India@75: Freedom from trans-fats by 2022), food majors pledged to reformulate packaged foods to reduce the level of salt, sugar and saturated fat,” he added.
“The food services sector promised to provide healthier food options and introduce menu labeling, even as major food retail players including e-commerce players agreed to promote healthier food options and responsible retail practices,” the publication reported him as saying.