The Canadian House of Commons’ Standing Committee on Health (HESA) recently heard testimony from Nestlé S.A. and Kellogg Co. representatives about dietary salt reduction. The representatives reportedly backed recent efforts to reduce salt levels in popular products, noting that breakfast cereals account for only 3 percent of the salt in the Canadian diets. Nestlé Director of Corporate Affairs Catherine O’Brien also stated that the company currently complies with the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s Health Check™ program, which has worked to remove 500,000 kilograms of salt from the food supply in the past 4 years. “We must balance the push of science with the pull of the market—consumers will simply not compromise on taste, therefore it must be a priority alongside improved health,” O’Brien was quoted as saying.

According to media sources, some HESA members have expressed frustration with forthcoming federal salt reduction targets because they are not mandatory. “I frankly don’t understand why we’re still here talking about a voluntary approach, why we’re buying the line that the industry is going to just do it,” MP Judy Wasylycia-Leis (NDP – Winnipeg North) apparently told the cereal makers. “This salt sells your
products.” See The Vancouver Sun, November 16, 2009;, November 18, 2009.

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For decades, manufacturers, distributors and retailers at every link in the food chain have come to Shook, Hardy & Bacon to partner with a legal team that understands the issues they face in today's evolving food production industry. Shook attorneys work with some of the world's largest food, beverage and agribusiness companies to establish preventative measures, conduct internal audits, develop public relations strategies, and advance tort reform initiatives.