Salt Awareness Week 2013 - "Less Salt Please"

CASH held their 14th National Salt Awareness Week on Monday 11th – Sunday 17th March 2013. This year, we asked for ‘Less Salt Please’, showing how everybody, including chefs, can use less salt and still enjoy the great flavour of their food.

Many people now know that eating too much salt is bad for their health and are looking to cut down.  However, whilst you can take control of your salt intake when preparing food at home by reading the labels and not adding salt, when eating out out of the home it can be difficult to know where to start.  It is much harder to eat less salt when eating food prepared by other people, such as chefs in restaurants, cafes, canteens, takeaway and fast food venues – not to mention recipe suggestions in cook books.  These foods can contain a lot of hidden salt, and without labels on these products, it is very hard to make a healthier choice. 

In this years National Salt Awareness Week, we showed you how to take control of the salt in your own food preparation, by simply using less salty and more tasty ingredients, as well as adding less salt during cooking and at the table. We highlighted to the catering industry, chefs and others involved, the importance of adding less salt to our food and the long-term health implications of eating a high salt diet.

As part of the week, we carried out a survey looking at the salt content of meals in high end, chain and fast food restaurants, as well as cafes. The results of the survey demonstrates the shockingly high levels of salt found in the out of home sector, and highlights the need for salt reduction in this area. Click here for more information.

A reception at the House of Commons took place on 13th March, with speakers celebrity chef Raymond Blanc and shadow public health minister Diane Abbott highlighting the need of "Less Salt Please!" 

The fourteenth annual Salt Awareness Week was a great success with more local events and supporters than ever before. Some key successes from the week include

  • More than 248 pieces of media coverage, including print, TV, radio, online and magazines was generated with an estimated reach of  108 million impacts
  • 123 people attendees at the the House of Commons Parliamentary Reception
  • More than 900 local events took place around the country during the week
  • Support from 21 health organisations and 5 celebrities
  • Successful twitter chat hosted using the hashtag #LessSaltPlease, involving a number of like minded individuals discussing the future of salt reduction in the UK and worldwide
  • 22 countries took part around the world including Australia, Bangladesh, The Healthy Caribbean Coalition, the Pan American Health Organisation and the Lebanon.
  • Poster translated into 6 languages including Arabic; Polish; Portuguese; Spanish; to great effect!

Full summary and evaluation is available to download here