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Reformulation of Breakfast Cereals: The Accuracy of Nutrition Declaration on Food Labels for the Monitoring of Food Reformulation in Ireland

Thursday, 18 August 2022

A Healthy Weight for Ireland: Obesity Policy and Action Plan 2016 – 2025 sets out a roadmap to reduce rates of overweight and obesity across the Irish population over a 10-year period.

Levels of overweight and obesity have doubled across the Irish adult population since the early 1980s. More than one-half of the Irish adult population are now overweight or obese, with only 40% of adults falling within a healthy weight range. The rates of overweight and obesity in Irish children is plateauing and, in some cases, reducing. Action point 3.1 of A Healthy Weight for Ireland: Obesity Policy and Action Plan 2016 – 2025 commits to setting food reformulation targets for total fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt with the food industry and monitoring progress in reaching these targets from 2016 to 2025.

Breakfast cereals identified in a 2016 cross-sectional market scan (n=453), were assigned a weighting based on manufacturer type (‘branded’, ‘own brand’), product category (natural, flavoured and luxury) and declared nutrition content. In 2019, breakfast cereals (n=200) were randomly selected from these weighted groups.

Breakfast cereals were analysed in a laboratory using accredited methods for total fat, saturated fat sugar and salt. See the results in this study.


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