As the sodium-reduction trend continues to grow, so does consumer awareness and concern over the high levels of sodium in the processed foods they eat.
Since the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announcement in early February, many consumers have become more aware of the need to reduce sodium in their diets. According to a recent Mintel report, about half (52 percent) of American adults are currently watching their diet, and 15 percent of them are doing so due to their concerns about salt intake. It was also reported that 44 percent of consumers always or usually consult the Nutrition Facts Panel and/or ingredient list to look at sodium when considering foods.
The number of consumers consulting those labels will increase in 2012 as the new Facts Up Front nutrient-based labeling system takes off. With this system, sodium content will become more visible to consumers, making it easier for them to make healthy decisions when purchasing food. It will also increase the pressure on food manufacturers to implement sodium reductions in their products.