How healthy is your sandwich? We’ve found the answer could depend on where you shop. We want to take your views to the government so it can encourage shops to be clearer about what’s in our food.
Whether your favourite sarnie is a BLT, a chicken salad or something completely different you may be able to get a healthier version of your preferred lunchtime snack if you shop around.
Research we released today found you could be eating three times as much fat and double the amount of salt as you’d have in the same sandwich bought elsewhere.
So how do you know what you’re eating? Well that’s just it – unless all the places where you buy your sandwiches use the same traffic light labelling scheme it could be very difficult to tell.
Double the fat for the same sandwich?
Although I’m a vegetarian, I was shocked to find out that Morrisons chicken salad sandwich contains almost double the amount of fat (11.7g) than the same sandwich from Waitrose (6.0g).
Waitrose uses traffic lights but Morrisons doesn’t, so how could you tell that the Morrisons sandwich is the less healthy option? It would take quite a bit of planning, calculating and note writing to work it out. As much as I always prefer to go for the healthy option, I just don’t have the spare time for that.
We’ve discussed the use of traffic light labels before on Which? Convo. Andy told us that:
‘I religiously now examine saturated fat and salt content but would love a traffic light system so I wouldnt waste time examining the labels of foods with big red blobs on them.’
Stevie B pointed out that colour-coded things would be easier for those who have problems reading the very small print:
‘The traffic light method is good for me, as reading small print is tough without glasses these days. Easy to read labels allows a more informed choice and the easier the better for me.’
Help us lobby for better labelling
At Which? we’d like to see clear, consistent labelling right on the front of food packaging.
Do you think a system of traffic lights, like the one on the left, would help you make healthier choices?
The Department of Health wants to know – it released a consultation on Monday to help decide on the best scheme. We’ll be responding and would like to include your views as well – it’s important that consumers have their say on food labelling.
- Would a traffic light scheme that was the same across all packaging help you make healthier choices?
- What products would you like to see traffic lights on?
- Would you find it useful to see ‘high’, ‘medium’ and ‘low’ on the traffic lights as well as the colours?
We’ll be talking to the Department of Health so that it can take your feedback on board. Together we can help the government work out how food labelling can work best for those buying the sandwiches.