Salt levels in some branded foods vary hugely depending on where in the world they are sold, a new campaign group said yesterday.
A KFC Chicken Twister sold in the UK has a third more salt than the same product in France, World Action and Salt and Health World Action and Salt and Health (Wash) revealed.
The group, which has 194 expert members across 48 different countries, also found that Kellogg’s All Bran cereal sold in Britain and Ireland has about three times as much salt as the American version.
Cuts in salt
Wash project-co-ordinator Naomi Campbell said: ‘These huge variations in salt contents show that the excuses of the food industry – that it is technically too difficult to reduce salt, and that customers will not accept the reductions – are rubbish.
‘Wash research shows food companies have reduced salt levels in some countries – we want them to reduce the salt in all their products in all their markets.’
Wash is calling on multinational food companies to cut salt to the same level in their products sold across the world.
The group wants adults’ daily salt intake reduced to less than 5g a day worldwide – a move it says would lower blood pressure, reducing the risk of strokes and heart disease. In the UK the average intake of salt is between 9g and 10g a day.
KFC said in a statement: ‘As is the case with many consumer products, KFC products occasionally differ from country to country due to local taste preferences. KFC is committed to reducing levels of salt across its product range.We are continuing to work through a salt reduction plan across our menu and we regularly update the Food Standards Agency with our progress.’
Wash claims Kellogg’s All Bran in the UK and Ireland has 2.25g of salt per 100g, compared with 0.65g per in the US.
Kellogg’s said: ‘Kellogg UK has worked with other cereal manufacturers to achieve salt reductions of more than 33 per cent since 1998. A portion of breakfast cereal generally contains between 0 and 11 per cent of the guideline daily amount for salt.
‘Some regional discrepancies exist between similar products around the world, largely reflecting the variances in consumer taste preferences, traditions and ingredient supplies of the markets.’