Pub chains join FSA healthy eating drive

05 February 2009
Pub chains join FSA healthy eating drive

Six of the UK's leading pub chains have become the latest catering operators to sign up to the Food Standard Agency's (FSA)'s commitment to providing healthier meals outside the home.

The pub chains have made an ongoing commitment to support the Agency's efforts to reduce salt and saturated fat intakes, and wider Government work to tackle obesity by helping people to eat a balanced diet.

The groups have also described some specific projects they will be working on during 2009, including:

  • Making nutritional information more readily available to customers - in some cases gathering information for the first time.
  • Working with suppliers to reduce salt and saturated fat levels, and remove trans fats in best-selling products.
  • Launching training for kitchen and serving staff on nutrition and healthy cooking practices.
  • Offering more menu choice - with new healthier options, a wider range of alternatives to chips, increasing the amount of vegetables served with meals, reducing the number of fried dishes on the menu, and even pricing healthy options below their other meals.

Each company has agreed to provide a six-month update to the FSA on the progress of this work.

Rosemary Hignett, head of nutrition at the FSA, said: "Pubs have always been popular places for couples and families to eat out together. We're delighted that these pubs have decided to work alongside us, because it shows that caterers can make some really positive changes without taking the pleasure out of a special occasion.

"These new commitments build on a lot of good work that has been under way for some time, and we are sure that other pub restaurant chains will see what is happening and want to get involved too."

The FSA is working with the UK's largest family restaurant and coffee shop chains, to develop similar commitments, details of which will be announced later this year.

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By Daniel Thomas

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