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Food labelling made easy - eat well be well

Posted on January 17, 2007 at 04:20 PM

Reading a food label - Unless you know what you are looking for, labels on food can be very confusing.
Unless you know what you are looking for, labels on food can be very confusing.

Unless you know exactly how much salt, fat or sugar you are supposed to eat each day, choosing the healthiest foods is almost impossible at the moment for busy shoppers

There is no consistency in the labelling of food products and often foods that one would expect to be healthy can have surprisingly high levels of salt or saturated fat. We believe that every consumer should be able see at a glance whether a food was high in fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt and not have to read the fine print.  a system which will see dietary advice presented in a prominent and easy-to-follow format on the front of food packaging.

Among the proposals put forward are:

  • Provide separate information on fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt using red, amber or green colour coding to indicate whether levels of these nutrients are high, medium or low and the extent to which they should be included in a balanced diet.
  • Help consumers make informed choices and construct a balanced diet.
  • Allow consumers to quickly and correctly identify whether a product is a healthier option or one which is high in fat, sugar or salt.
  • Help consumers make comparisons between products, by quickly identifying which one is lower in fat, salt or sugar and which is higher.
  • Be easy and clear to understand.
  • Be applicable to as wide a range of consumers as possible-particularly with respect to age, socio-economic and ethnic group.

This is why Labour and Fine Gael today announced our joint policy on traffic light food labelling, which will see dietary advice presented in a prominent and easy-to-follow format on the front of food packaging. Read more about it here.

Do you think that this system of food labeling will change your shopping habits?

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