Food menus to include calorie information in new Government plans

calorieRestaurants, pubs, cafes and takeaways will all display calorie information for their food, under new Government plans.

The Government has launched a consultation that will look for views on:

  • Which businesses and products should have to display calorie information
  • What to display alongside calorie information
  • Where to display this information
  • How businesses can put this into practice and whether they will face any issues or obstacles in doing so.

The Government hopes this will equip the public to make healthier decisions about the food they consume.

‘As a population, we are eating out more than ever before,’ Shirley Cramer CBE, chief executive, RSPH, said.

‘From our previous research we know that the public often seek out calorie information for the food they are eating.

‘We know that nutritional labelling provides an effective measure when helping consumers make healthier choices.

‘It is absolutely right the Government has launched this consultation on calorie labelling in places serving food and drink outside of the home.’

Calorie consumption drops by 3%

Recommendations made by the RSPH include for consumers to be aware of upselling and calorie intake.

A study, by Cornell University, found consumers who know the calorie count of their food eat more healthily.

Consumers reduce their calorie consumption by 3% when given a menu with nutritional information included.

‘Even if you’re an educated person who eats out a lot and is aware of nutrition, there can still be surprising things in these calorie counts,’ Professor John Cawley, author of the study, said.

‘It’s clear that people value this information.

‘It’s a cheap policy to put in place, and the fact that there is a reduction in calories ordered makes it appealing.’

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