Traffic lights for Scottish labels

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Minister for Public Health Michael Matheson has announced he is recommending traffic light colours on all pre-packaged foods sold in Scotland.

The red-amber-green guide will sit alongside information about Guideline Daily Amounts, clearly illustrating levels of sugar, fat, saturated fat, salt and energy. The four UK governments will now work on practical guidance for implementation in 2013.

Recommending this new system today Mr Matheson said: “This new format will make it easier for us all to keep track of what we eat and choose healthier products. We have fought long and hard in the interests of our consumers, and consistent labelling is the best outcome possible.

“I commend the major retailers who have come on board, moving towards consistency on our supermarket shelves.

“We have already introduced a range of measures to improve diet, including spending over £2.5 million this year and next on projects to encourage healthy eating, from community initiatives in deprived areas to the HealthyLiving Award, designed to promote healthy eating choices in catering settings.

“We are having wider discussions with major manufacturers, retailers and caterers about broader actions in Scotland to inspire healthier choices across the whole food spectrum. Consistent nutritional labelling across the UK is a vital step forwards to improving the health of the nation.”

Related information:

Further information on food labelling can be found on the Food Standards Agency Scotland website.