A recent study has reportedly concluded that cereal and bread are major
sources of dietary salt intake for children and adolescents in the United
Kingdom. Naomi Marrero, et al., “Salt Intake of Children and Adolescents in
South London: Consumption Levels and Dietary Sources,” Hypertension, March 2014. After analyzing the urinary sodium levels of 340 children ages 5 to 17, researchers reported that 70 percent of all participants consumed more salt
than the maximum recommended amount for their age group.

In particular, the results purportedly showed that “salt intake increased with
age and was also higher in boys than in girls for the 5- to 6- and 13- to 17-year
age groups.” With 66 percent of the 5- to 6-year-olds, 73 percent of the 8- to
9-year-olds, and 73 percent of the 13- to 17-year-olds exceeding daily salt
recommendations, the researchers also noted that cereal and cereal products
contributed 36 percent of the salt in children’s diets, followed by meat
products (18 percent) and milk and milk products (11 percent).

“Bread alone accounted for 15 percent of salt intake in our study population,”
concluded the study’s authors. “Although many manufacturers have made
significant reductions in the sodium content of their bread, a survey in 2011
showed huge variations between brands. The sodium content of the bread
with the highest value was 350% higher than that of the lowest. Further
reductions in the salt content of bread alone would have a major effect on salt


Issue 517

About The Author

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.