Food brands lead campaign to increase fiber intake

The FDF unveiled the program – called Action on Fiber – after its survey of 1,000 consumers found that only one in three (33%) were aware of the recommended adult amount of 30g per day. 70% did not know if they were getting this in their diet or said they did not meet the daily recommendation.

These findings are consistent with dietary survey data showing that only 9% of UK adults currently adhere to dietary guidelines. The problem is not unique to the British. Fiber intake in most European countries is below recommended levels.

The UK government increased the dietary recommendation for fiber from 24g to 30g per day in 2015 (the European Food Safety Authority recommends adults consume 25g of fiber per day). There has been very little change in the contribution of the British population since then, the FDF said.

He also complained that government policy over the years has focused on reducing the amount of fat, salt and sugar we consume, when there has been little action to increase. the foods and nutrients we need most.

Major food brands are now committed to launching new products rich in fiber

The Action on Fiber initiative is supported by many FDF members and well-known brands including Nestlé, BirdsEye and Kellogg’s. They signed a wide range of commitments, including highlighting higher fiber options on product packaging and commitments to launch new higher fiber products.

The commitments are broad and will help provide consumers with more practical and diversified options to increase their intakes, according to the FDF.

The FDF said the program aims to bridge the gap between fiber intake and dietary recommendations by making high-fiber diets more attractive, normal and easy for people.

FDF Scientific Director Kate Halliwell said: “Fiber plays an essential role in the diet and currently the average UK population does not get enough fiber in their diet. Our survey clearly highlights the need for further action to increase fiber intakes and for greater awareness of how we can consume more fiber and the benefits it brings.

Professor Judy Buttriss, Executive Director of the British Nutrition Foundation, added: “Average fiber intakes in all sections of the population have been low for many years despite the well-documented health benefits of fiber. This gap reduction initiative is a welcome boost to ongoing efforts to encourage improvement – higher fiber choices should be easy and appetizing options.

Many brands are committed to innovating to introduce higher fiber products into their lines and to improve existing products.

The stakes

Birds Eye, Aunt Bessie’s, Goodfella’s Pizza (nomadic foods)

“Nomad Foods, through its UK brands Birds Eye, Aunt Bessie’s and Goodfella’s, is committed to helping ‘close the gap’ between fiber intake and UK dietary recommendations. We believe we can support this commitment by focusing on both products and communications. As part of our broader nutrition strategy, we are committed to bringing new products and innovations to market with more fiber, as well as increasing the fiber content of current products through reformulation. Additionally, we’re dedicated to providing positive fiber posts and educational content online, as well as service suggestions and recipes that include a source of fiber. Finally, we are committed to supporting Fiber February, to help promote diets higher in fiber. “

Weetabix Food Company

“Given the importance of fiber in our diet and the large gap we see between the dietary recommendation and our actual fiber intake as a nation, Weetabix Food Company brand cereals are all high in fiber and we will continue to make sure every brand new cereal we launch is also high in fiber. Where possible, we will communicate this high fiber message on the front of the package to help alert consumers in-store. “

Innocent

“We’re always looking for ways to make our products even healthier, which is why we’re committed to making each of our adult smoothies a source of fiber by the end of 2021.”

Nestle

“Nestlé UK will help bridge the gap between fiber intake and dietary recommendations through a number of actions with our products and brands. Our Nestlé Cereals with the Green Banner contain whole grains as the number 1 ingredient and are at least a source of fiber, most of which are high in fiber.

“We will highlight fiber on packaging where possible and use our marketing power to encourage consumers and customers to purchase products and meal solutions that contain fiber; as well as working with food service providers to provide more fiber on menus. “

How to best fill the fiber gap?

What’s the best way to make fiber a tasty option? Consumers might think that eating more fruits, vegetables, and pulses is the best way to increase their fiber intake. Vegetarian and vegan brands are therefore seeing an opportunity to promote their fiber-rich offers.

Quorn, for example, who joined the Action on Fiber initiative, claimed that its basic ingredient, mycoprotein, which is found in all Quorn brand products, is naturally high in fiber. The company therefore believes that it is well positioned “To close the gap in fiber intakes in the UK to improve digestive and heart health of consumers, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and colorectal cancer”.

But many other challenger brands are breaking new ground in this area seeking to tap the demand for high fiber products. Among them are healthier snack brands that believe this format offers an ideal way to make fiber more appealing, normal, and easier to incorporate into their diet.

For example, Wholey Moly – which just secured a £ 100,000 investment to support its launch at a range of retailers – offers a range of cookies that, in addition to being 50% less sugar than similar products, are rich. in fiber.

Co-founder Meenesh Mistry said growing awareness of gut health among shoppers meant that a high level of fiber was an important consideration when the brand launched in 2018. “Fiber is the new protein”He told FoodNavigator, adding that the key to a high fiber diet is varied. “Plants are the obvious route to fiber, but salads and vegetables aren’t to everyone’s liking. But there are plenty of ways to get fiber into your diet. Wholey Moly fills their cookies with plants, nuts, seeds and chicory root to supplement the fiber content.

Whole Moley
Healthy cookies … the key to making tasty high fiber choices?

Another challenger with a high protein product is seed snack maker Pep & Lekker. Susan Gafsen, co-founder, agreed that high fiber has replaced high protein as the nutritional value that consumers crave the most.

“With more research showing that good physical and mental health starts in your gut, offering a health product that is high in fiber to support gut health is obvious. “she told us. “Very few people lack protein, and yet there is a proliferation of protein bars and balls, but many people need to eat more fiber, and a product rich in fiber is an easy way to meet that need. ”

She added: “As we learned about the importance of fiber in the diet and the difference it would make to health and wellness, it was really important to revamp our snacks to make sure they were high in fiber. In addition to fiber from seeds and apple, our seed snacks contain 12% chicory root fiber, a source of inulin: great for the gut.

Simplyseedz, which makes oatmeal porridge and snacks made from fruits and seeds, is another challenger brand that is evolving its high fiber credentials. Founder Cathryn Zielinski said: “We’ve created a convenient, tasty and easy way to include fiber in our diet with our jars of unprocessed porridge. All of our recipes are a lightly blended blend of giant oats and gut-stimulating seeds.

We have always loved everything that is natural with a minimum of processing. We will continue to produce naturally good food for our consumers without compromise. We use chunky oatmeal with pumpkin and sunflower seeds added for extra fiber and real fruit. Our recipes are lightly mixed, not finely powdered, tasty and nutritious, as porridge should be.


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Tanya S. Norvell

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