The Caterer

Diet up to individuals, says survey

18 October 2004
Diet up to individuals, says survey

The hospitality industry should not be held accountable for the nation's poor diet, according to a survey carried out at an Arena debate at the Novotel Euston in London last week. The survey was conducted among the 150 people from the hospitality and food manufacturing industries who attended the debate, entitled Obesity - Not Our Problem.

It found that nearly 90% believed individual consumers should be responsible for ensuring a healthy diet. However, the same percentage believed that a consumer campaign, highlighting the recommended intake of calories and fat should be launched by the Government. A further 77% of respondents opposed a tax on unhealthy foodstuffs, but a similar amount said they were keen to increase awareness of the problem. Just over half the audience believed that restaurants, pubs and contract caterers should list calories on menus.

Speaking from the panel, Anton Edelmann, principal chef for Sodexho, said he had always offered people variation on his menus. "There's always something healthy on the menu such as grilled fish and a nice salad, but people rarely go for the healthy stuff," he added.

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