Aug 13, 2015, updated August 2015
Sodium is an essential mineral, but too much of the salt in our diet comes from what’s added during manufacturing, home cooking or at the table.
In 2013, we pledged to accelerate salt reduction across all of our savoury food products to support the WHO salt target of no more than 5g of salt per person per day by 2025. However, reducing the salt content in some products poses a technical challenge. Besides seasoning, salt is important for food preservation and texture.
We also need to reduce salt content without consumers either adding it themselves or choosing saltier alternatives. That is why we take a gradual approach and combine reduced salt content with optimised ingredient combinations to promote taste.
We have cut the salt content of our Maggi Tomato Mozzarella Soup, sold in Germany, by 34%. Our challenge was to reduce salt without impacting on taste.
Our research and development chefs overcame this challenge by selecting and optimising the best ingredients to rebalance the taste profile. At the same time, they were able to reduce sugar content by 36% and saturated fat by 53%. The new recipe achieved a consumer taste test win of 66/34, meaning 66% of people prefer it over our competitor’s alternative. The product is due to be re-launched in June 2015.
Value to Society
The benefits of reducing sodium are widely recognised by international and national authorities. And in 2013, we pledged to accelerate salt reduction across all of our savoury food products to help consumers achieve the sodium intake target recommended by the WHO and other international and national authorities.
However, reducing the level of salt without impacting the safety, texture, appearance and taste represents a significant technological challenge. We continue to apply research and development resources to this important area. We apply a gradual approach to reduction, helping our consumers to adapt their taste preference, without reaching for extra ingredients or sauces, or moving to an alternative product. It makes our consumers more likely to adopt a healthier diet and ensures a long-term commitment to improved and sustainable nutrition.
Value to Nestlé
Nestlé is committed to helping our consumers reach and maintain optimal nutrition and health throughout their lives as we believe that over the long term, healthy populations, healthy economies and healthy business performance are mutually reinforcing.
We have assessed our entire product portfolio against the Nestlé Nutritional Foundation sodium criteria, and our overall sodium reduction achievement was 4.7%. We are now looking into potential solutions for those products that do not currently meet the required standards.