Skip to main content
English Cymraeg
Nutritional Standards for Health and Social Care settings

HSC Nutritional Standards: other food and drink

Northern Ireland specific

Nutritional Standards: Other food and drink high in fat, salt and sugar 24

Last updated: 25 February 2022

Nutritional Standards

6.1 All mayonnaise and salad creams (including those used in potato salads and coleslaws) must be low fat, light or reduced calorie versions.

6.2 At least 75 per cent of prepacked ready meals and pre-prepared sandwiches on display must contain less than 6g of saturated fat per portion.

6.3 A maximum of one hot main course option per service can be deep fried, batter or breadcrumb coated or in pastry. Consider this standard in conjunction with standard 4.5 when menu planning.

6.4 There must be at least two days each week when high-fat starchy food such as chips, potato wedges, roast potatoes or garlic bread are not served. When these are served there must be at least one starchy side option on display that is not deep fried or coated in oil or butter.

6.5 When desserts are served, a single serving of dessert should not exceed 250 calories per serving.

6.6 Lower fat alternatives to cream must be used in cooking, for example low fat yogurt, very low fat crème fraîche and fromage frais or any similar product that has less than 15g of fat per 100g.

6.7 Savoury snacks, including crisps, must have a calorie content per pack of 200 kcal or less.

6.8 All cold beverages available must be low calorie and therefore no added sugar beverages are to be offered. Note: Low calorie (low energy) beverages are products not containing more than 20 calories (80 kilojoules, or kJ, per 100 ml) energy for liquids.

6.9 Confectionery, packet sweet and biscuit snacks must be offered in the smallest standard single serve portion size commercially available. This must not exceed 125 calories per packet for confectionery and packet sweets and 200 calories per serving for chocolate and biscuit snacks.

6.10 Traybakes and baked products for example, muffins, scones, brownies and caramel squares - must not exceed 250 calories per serving.

6.11 Salt must not be added to this food group during cooking or before service.

What foods are included

  • chocolate, crisps, biscuits, pastries, cakes, puddings, ice cream, sugary soft drinks and sweets
  • jams, honey and sugar
  • rich sauces and gravies
  • butter, ghee, lard, suet, cooking oils. (such as palm oil and coconut oil), oil-based salad dressings, containing these oils and mayonnaise. 
  • cream and crème fraîche