Nestlé this month announced a commitment to reduce salt levels across all of its products worldwide, demonstrating the ongoing commitment by global food companies to encourage healthier lifestyles and meet health targets set by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Aimed at supporting new WHO salt targets of no more than 5g of salt per person, per day, by 2025, Nestlé has committed to reducing the salt levels of its savoury products including soups, noodles and recipe mixes. All new product launches will also be formulated with lower levels of sodium.

The company’s commitment was announced following the endorsement of the SaltSmart consortium’s action plan at the Pan American Health Organisation/World Health Organisation’s (PAHO/WHO) dietary salt consumption conference in June 2013. The plan, which seeks to reduce dietary salt consumption in the Americas by half by the year 2020, proposes a series of commitments and actions including reducing salt in industrially processed foods.

In a press statement, Henri-Pierre Lenoble, Nutrition, Health and Wellness manager at Nestlé Food said this is part of Nestlé’s ongoing progress to cut salt levels and provide consumers with healthier products.

“We have made great strides in reducing the salt content of our food products in recent years and we want to build on that progress. Our goal is to offer consumers products that enable them to make practical, healthy nutritional choices, every day,” he said.

Nestlé has committed to reducing salt in high sodium products by at least 10 per cent in the next three years. The company’s current portfolio of products contain 14,043 fewer tons of salt than in 2005 while it has removed 8,893 tons of salt from products in Asia and Africa.

FIA Policy Director, Melanie Vilarasau Slade, applauded Nestlé’s move, noting that Nestlé’s recent announcement highlights the industry’s efforts to promote healthier food products and meals in a bid to encourage healthier lifestyles.

“The food and beverage industry, in partnership with other stakeholders, is committed to self-regulatory efforts aimed at encouraging consumers to lead a healthier lifestyle. Through initiatives such as these, the industry in Asia is contributing to the promotion of healthier food choices”.

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