Technology solutions for salt reduction
Latest figures show a reduction in UK consumer salt intake from 9.5g per day in 2000/01 to 8.1g in 2011 which remains 2g higher than the government recommendation of 6g/day and 3g higher than the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommendation of 5g/day. The challenges in reducing salt are different in each product category and the multiple functions of salt in each application need to be considered when reducing salt. Using techniques such as gradual reduction, salt replacement ingredients and flavour enhancers may be limited in terms of absolute sodium reduction levels and related consumer acceptability. This paper reviews technological solutions that may allow sodium replacement at higher levels.
While essential for life, sodium is implicated as a risk factor for many lifestyle related diseases including coronary heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke. In many countries around the world, governments and charities are working to raise consumer awareness of the health impact of too much salt in the diet. The food industry has responded positively to the call to reduce salt, using gradual reduction and reformulation to achieve significant reductions across many product categories.
Latest figures show a reduction in UK consumer salt intake from 9.5g per day in 2000/01 to 8.1g in 2011, which is encouraging, but still remains 2g higher than the government recommendation of 6g/day and 3g higher than the WHO recommendation of 5g/day. The evidence is strong that this overconsumption not only has a detrimental effect on our health but also causes a huge financial burden to our health care systems.
When developing new products or reformulating existing foods, manufacturers have several options available to them in order to reduce the sodium content of their products. They include the following or combinations of the f ...