In Mayor Bloomberg's latest heath initiative, he has asked restaurants and food companies across the country to voluntarily reduce the salt content in food. Because it's an issue that is almost impossible to legislate and regulate, the administration and partners in other cities are hoping the public pressure and enticement of positive PR will compel those in the food industry to comply. Companies and restaurants that commit to the targets set by the city have five years to reduce salt in their products and menu items by 25%, a target reached after over 60 talks with officials at huge manufacturers like PepsiCo and Kraft.
As was the case with Bloomberg's smoking and trans fat bans and calorie count requirements, some are crying nanny state, while others champion the move as progressive. The National Salt Institute, of course, is not happy. The New York Restaurant Association, Food Emporium in Manhattan, Subway are on board.
· Health Department Announces Proposed Targets for Voluntary Salt Reduction in Packaged and Restaurant Foods [NYC DOH]
· New city plan pushes for 25% reduction of salt in nearly all food products [NYDN]