Over 3 years, Continente carried out nutritional optimization plans in more than 538 private label products, with annual reductions corresponding to 860 tonnes of sugar, 120 tonnes of salt and the elimination of palm oil from 92 products.

As part of the World Health Day, which takes place tomorrow, April 7th, we present the results of this change in Continente’s private label products, which has already allowed us, since 2019, to remove tonnes of sugar and salt from our customers’ annual diet, whose excessive consumption has been linked to a range of health problems. These reductions are made without compromising our customers’ eating habits, or without even noticing these changes in taste. An example of this are our canned legumes, typically used in salads and in several other dishes, which now have a low salt content, that is, less than 0.3g per 100g of product”, explains Mayumi Delgado, responsible for Continente’s nutrition team.

The reductions in these ingredients apply to Continente products, in particular yoghurts, breakfast cereals, biscuits, soft drinks, crisps, tomato purées and take away soups. The changes were gradual, namely in the sugar content in liquid yoghurts and in the salt content in take-away soups, so that consumers would not notice a big difference in taste. In the case of tomato purées, all added salt was eliminated.

In addition to the aforementioned reductions in salt, fat and sugar contents from food, the brand has identified other ingredients that may have a negative impact on customers’ health, due to repetitive or excessive consumption, namely flavour enhancers, such as monosodium glutamate, hydrogenated fats, among various additives, and is working on its minimization or even elimination whenever possible.

At the same time, Continente continues to invest in the nutritional literacy of consumers through the ‘Nutritional Traffic Light’ on the front of its packaging, which shows simplified information on the nutrients that, in excess, can be a serious health problem. Through a colour code, the traffic light shows the concentration of sugar, salt, fats and saturated fats (green – low, yellow – moderate and red – high). An essential tip for balanced choices is to opt more often for foods with more green or yellow and less often for ‘red lights’.

And our commitment to healthy eating does not end with these measures. The ‘Continente Equilíbrio’ brand continues to grow and has recently started to include specific food products for children - yoghurts, juices, cereals -, which can facilitate children’s snacks. The ‘Continente do Bebé’ brand has healthier eating options for the baby’s first 1,000 days after birth. We are mindful to the needs of all consumers and therefore innovations will continue to emerge”, adds Tânia Lucas, Private Labels Director at Continente.

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