AWASH supports the Government’s National Preventive Health Task Force…

AWASH supports the Government’s National Preventive Health Task Force in considering tough proposals to improve diets.

The Australian Government’s National Preventative Health Task Force has released a paper entitled “Australia: the healthiest country by 2020″ that includes recommendations such as the consideration of tax incentives and disincentives to encourage the production and consumption of healthier foods.

AWASH believes that the food industry is a key player and should be collaborating with government on this important initiative.

Said Professor Bruce Neal, Chair of AWASH and Senior Director, The George Institute for International Health: “Australians are eating dangerously high levels of salt. Salt reduction and other nutrition initiatives should be seen as a key priority alongside smoking and alcohol prevention. Banning foods is not prudent but tough measures to control the amount of salt in foods should be considered. Kraft and other companies need to do more to reduce salt levels in all foods, including vegemite.”

Vegemite contains over 3000mg sodium (7.5grams of salt) per hundred grams – six times the amount in a classified high salt food.

Vegemite on toast or a vegemite sandwich contains about a gram of salt which is around 20% of an older child’s recommended daily amount.

For further information on salt in children’s foods, and the Australian Food and Grocery Council response to the publication, see the following links: