Loblaw, Boulangerie St-Méthode and Hypo Délices commit to reducing salt
June 19, 2014
By Bakers Journal
June 20, 2014, Montreal – Loblaw Companies Limited, Boulangerie St-Méthode and Hypo Délices, an allergen-free and gluten-free food processing company, recently joined the Melior program in a commitment to reduce the amount of sodium in their products.
Food distributor Loblaw Companies Limited has implemented the Guiding Stars program in its Provigo, Provigo Le Marché and Loblaws stores. It will soon introduce in its Maxi and Maxi & Cie stores.
In addition, the company has made commitments to reduce sodium in its President’s Choice line of products. It will reduce by 22 per cent on average the sodium content of 95 existing control label brands and develop 151 new control label products respecting the sodium levels requirements of Health Canada.
“Guiding and supporting Quebec consumers to help them make healthier eating choices is a priority for us,” stated Anita Jarjour, senior director, corporate affairs and communications for Loblaw Companies Limited in Quebec, in a media statement. “We are proud to offer Quebecers no fewer than 246 control label products with reduced sodium.”
Boulangerie St-Méthode is becoming the first bakery to join the Melior program by targeting sodium. Boulangerie St-Méthode has committed to reduce sodium by at least 35 per cent per two-slice serving of No Fat No Sugar Added multi-cereal and 100 per cent whole-wheat Les Grains St-Méthode breads and by an average of 25 per cent in seven other breads. The bakery will also place at least 50 per cent of the flours used with integral wheat flour in four existing No Fat No Sugar Added breads of Les Grains St-Méthode brand.
Benoit Faucher, general manager of Boulangerie St-Méthode, said in the statement that joining the Melior program is a natural next step for the company: “Baking healthier breads is in our DNA, and recognition from an independent, credible third party is a testament to the seriousness of our effort. Through our
association with Melior, we are setting the bar even higher and have decided to optimize our existing products rather than create new ones.”
Hypo Délices, an allergen- and gluten-free food processing company, creates ready-to-eat products such as lasagnas, muffin bars and cakes using top-quality ingredients that are largely allergen-free for the Ange-Gardien and Délices Complices lines and that are gluten-free for the Délices Complices line. Products made by this Quebec City area company can be found in supermarkets across the province. Its four commitments are to reduce fat content by 20 per cent and increase fibre content to two grams for each serving of Ange-Gardien cake; to reduce by five per cent the sodium content in Délices Complices lasagna; to elaborate two oatmeal cookie products containing more than three grams of fibre and with sodium and fat content no higher than 11 per cent of the recommended daily value; and to reduce the saturated fats by 50 per cent in the Christmas maple log.
To date, almost 40 commitments have been made by 10 signatories, including IGA, Pacini and Compass Group. To learn more about the commitments made by businesses, visit programmemelior.com.
According to the World Action on Salt and Health (WASH), lowering individual salt consumption by just six grams per day can reduce deaths associated with cardiovascular disease by 18 per cent, said the release. In an Ipsos survey conducted for Melior in 2012 only 11 per cent of respondents said they read food labels to check the sodium levels in the products they buy.
The Melior program is a Quebec initiative aiming to stimulate food progress and help improve the food supply in Quebec. The program involves voluntary charters of commitments toward nutritional progress signed by agri-food industry members. Inspired by a similar model in France, it is the first initiative of its kind in North America and has been fully adapted to Quebec realities. To date, 40 commitments have been made by 10 businesses representing all of the links in the agri-food chain. The program has been made possible through financial support from www.quebecenforme.org.
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