Swiss ingredients company Jungbunzlauer has answered industry demands for ways to cut salt content amid growing health concerns with the launch of a salt substitute for bakery products.
The international manufacturer of natural and nature-identical biodegradable ingredients says its sub4salt offers a sodium reduction of up to 35 per cent in bread and other baked products, without losses in taste and processing properties.
The product, a patent-pending mineral salts blend was first launched in Europe in November 2006. The company claims its product could cut salt content by up to 50 percent in some processed foods without losses in taste.
The company said it had three primary benefits: It has similar sensory characteristics to salt; it has no metallic potassium chloride aftertaste, and its usage and handling are similar to those of salt. Jungbunzlauer has now found it is suitable for bakery applications.
Concerns about salt
Numerous scientists are convinced that high salt intake is responsible for increasing blood pressure (hypertension), a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD) - a disease that causes almost 50 per cent of deaths in Europe. (Word disease repeated twice)
Adults are advised to consume only 6g of salt per day, but according to the UK Consensus Action on Salt and Health (CASH), a resident in the Western developed world consumes between 10g and 12g a day.
In its study of UK foods, the organisation found that many UK foods often still contain more than half the daily maximum limit for a six-year-old in a single serving.
According to recently published analysis covering 23 countries, led by Perviz Asaria from Kings Fund London, UK and published in The Lancet Chronic Diseases Series, reducing salt intake around the world 15 per cent could prevent almost nine million deaths between 2006 and 2015.
Salt reduction in industry
Because consumers are becoming increasingly cautious when considering their diets amid such reported health risks, companies have sought ways to reformulate to maintain sales and meet regulatory guidelines.
Furthermore, as new labelling laws are due to come in, which will require companies to clearly display salt content, it has become an even more pressing issue.
The Food and Drink Federation (FDF) released new research by TNS Worldpanel on the nutrition labels of 100,000 food and drink products, which demonstrated efforts made by the industry to cut salt content.
In November, Wild launched a new powder that allows food and beverage manufacturers to halve the amount of salt used in their products, making them healthier without impairing the taste.
Its product, SaltTrim proved successful in the US after coming to sale in October 2005, spurring the natural ingredients developer to make it available on the European market. It enables manufacturers to use up to 50 per cent less salt and to combine this with potassium chloride or other low sodium products used as a substitute to salt.
Unilever has dedicated resources to reducing salt in many of its products, the latest being its UK noodle range in July last year. Its Pot Noodle brand now contains 50 per cent less salt that in 2005.