Basildon Council has joined a new campaign across Essex to encourage food establishments across the county to improve their food’s nutritional quality. The latest scheme is aimed at supporting food establishments to make small changes to recipes and how food is prepared, so they can help reduce the impact of poor health as a result of diet choices.
Project ‘Tuck-In’ will see businesses taking a pledge to commit to reducing the fats, salts and sugars of the food they serve. In addition to reducing portion sizes on offer.
The proposed plans will also include reducing fats when frying food by switching to liquid oil, frying food at the right temperature and ensuring fried food is drained properly. They will also reduce the amount of sugar and salt used in cooking, ensuring water and low sugar drinks are available and offering healthy alternatives such as grilled options.
The new campaign is funded by the Department of Health and is based on their ‘Responsibility Deal’, where businesses will commit to providing food that is lower in sugar, fat and salt. As well as increasing fruit and vegetables, whole grain, and other healthy options.
Local Basildon food establishments have welcomed the plans and feel it could be of benefit to the people of Essex. Roberto Marroni from Ned’s Noodle Bar in the Eastgate Centre Food Court said:
“We are delighted to be part of this great scheme, we have been serving healthy noodles dishes for the last 15 years, it is about time we focus on eating healthily in the UK.
“We think the scheme will help people realise how healthy noodles are, and will stop people thinking we are just another local Chinese take away!”
The government have also praised the scheme with Councillor Terri Sargent, Cabinet member responsible for Environment and Community saying: “I am pleased Basildon Council is working with food outlets to improve nutritional quality of their food.
“In today’s world when take-away food and eating out are such a central part of our lives it is encouraging that Basildon’s food businesses are taking positive steps to ensure that healthy eating plays an important part in improving people’s diets and reducing ill health.”
The scheme is due to come into place across Essex within the next few months.