St. George Unofficial Bank Holiday

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Health Is Where The Cash Is

Britain's food watchdog was accused last night of endangering the lives of 15,000 people a year after backing down on strict guidelines designed to limit the amount of salt in food.

Health campaigners were furious at the decision by the Food Standards Agency to publish revised targets to cut salt in 85 types of food products by 2010. In many cases the agency raised levels after feedback from companies which claimed that they were unable to cut salt in certain products for tech- nical or safety reasons.

Increases in permitted levels recommended by the agency included:
- Raising the salt allowed in crisps such as Quavers and Skips from 1.4g to 3.4g per 100g;
- Ketchup up from 1.8g to 2.4g;
- Savoury biscuits up from 1.3g to 2.2g.

The agency said that it still hoped to cut the overall intake of salt per person per day from 10g to 6g within four years. But medical experts said that the new targets meant this would not be met, especially as the targets cannot be imposed on the food industry.

If salt intake were cut to 6g per day, it would prevent 70,000 heart attacks and strokes a year, of which 35,000 are fatal. If intake fell only to 8g a day, 15,000 people would die unnecessarily.
Leave fur where it belongs