MANUFACTURERS ARE addressing sodium concerns with new and reformulated products.
Among the more recent efforts:
• Kraft Foods announced plans to reduce sodium by an average of 10% across its North American portfolio over the next two years.
“A growing number of consumers are concerned about their sodium intake and we want to help them translate their intentions into actions,” Rhonda Jordan, Kraft's health and wellness president, said in a statement.
The company plans to reduce sodium in a number of products up to 20% by the end of 2012. For example, Oscar Mayer Bologna is slated to reduce sodium by 17% and some flavors of Easy Mac Cups are scheduled to reduce sodium by 20%.
The change follows the launch of other reduced-sodium products, including lower-sodium Oscar Mayer Bacon, Planters Lightly Salted nuts, and Hint of Salt crackers including Triscuit, Ritz and Wheat Thins.
• Bumble Bee Foods began distributing reduced-sodium albacore and light meat tuna to supermarkets this month.
Bumble Bee albacore contains 140 milligrams or less of sodium per serving — a 44% reduction from average sodium levels in 2008, while light meat tuna has been reduced to 180 milligrams per serving.
Early this year, Bumble Bee released Prime Fillet Solid White Albacore Very Low Sodium in Water. It contains 35 milligrams of sodium per serving.
Further sodium-reducing initiatives are in the works for the remaining products in the company's portfolio.
• General Mills, Minneapolis, has committed to reduce sodium in 600 SKUs over five years.
It will cut salt by 20% across multiple categories. The manufacturer has already reduced the sodium in both Cheerios and Honey Nut Cheerios by 16%; select Progresso soups by 25%; and across the Chex Snack Mix line by 36%.
• ConAgra pledged to reduce sodium by 20% across its portfolio by 2015.
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