Eating Well Choosing Better- Food Product Improvement in NI

Last updated:
22 August 2017
Eating Well Choosing Better
The Northern Ireland diet contains too much salt, saturated fats and sugar, whilst at the same time most people do not consume enough fruits, vegetables and wholegrain products. For people's diet to improve, the healthy choice should be the easy choice. Diet is a key factor in increasing life expectancy through preventing diet related illnesses.

The FSA is working with the Northern Ireland industry to make food healthier by:

  • reformulating products to lower the levels of sugar, salt or fat in foods
  • reducing the portion size, and/or the number of calories in single-serve products
  • shifting consumer purchasing towards lower or no added sugar products

Support for the Industry

Eating Well Choosing Better

The Eating Well Choosing Better programme supports small and medium sized businesses here with food product improvement, as well as improving the availability of small and/or reduced portion sizes, to make the healthy choice easy for the NI consumer. This project has been included on the NI Programme for Government consultation. The FSA is preparing an action and delivery plan in line with what is happening in both the UK (PHE) and the Republic of Ireland.

The Childhood Obesity Plan was published in England on 18 August 2016. This outlined a number of actions to be taken forward with industry including both a soft drinks industry levy and a sugar reduction plan. Public Health England (PHE) subsequently published a paper outlining their role in the implementation of the Obesity Plan which includes a list of nine food categories that contribute most of the sugar in our diet. From 2017 PHE will work towards setting targets, similar to the current UK salt targets, to deliver 20% reduction in sugar across these categories by 2020.

The categories identified by PHE are as follows:

  • yoghurts           
  • breakfast cereals   
  • biscuits                      
  • cakes and morning goods             
  • puddings                    
  • chocolate confectionery                           
  • sweet confectionery   
  • ice cream        
  • sweet spreads   

Find out more

The FSA wants to hear from key stakeholders on their views of food product improvement and find out about any work already underway in Northern Ireland.

A Retailer Forum is planned for Tuesday 24th October 2017 10am-12.30pm in the FSA offices, 10a-c Clarendon Road, Belfast. Please contact us for more information and to register for this event.

Please contact us for more information.