Sodium content of foodstuffs included in the sodium reduction regulation of South Africa
Myburgh, P. Herman
Schutte, Aletta E.
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As a first step in combating the high hypertension rate in South Africa, the Government has recently implemented a mandatory regulation (R.214) pertaining to the sodium content of foodstuffs with targets for 2016 and 2019. We aimed to measure the sodium content and establish whether industry is complying with the targets set in Regulation R.214. The sodium content of ten food products, randomly selected from each of the 13 food categories as described in the regulation (R.214) were measured by means of atomic absorption spectrometry subsequent to microwave digestion. The majority of the food products tested comply with the targets for 2016 (72%) and almost half of the products with the 2019 targets (42%). The highest variation was observed in the “all fat and butter spread” (20%) category, as well as the “raw-processed meat sausages” (32%). All of the food categories, except for “flavoured potato crisp, excluding salt-and-vinegar” and “flavoured ready-to-eat savoury snack and potato crisp, salt-and-vinegar only”, complied with the 2016 target. South Africa is at the forefront of countries implementing mandatory legislation for the reduction of sodium levels in food. These data provide valuable information with regards to baseline measurements and regulation compliance, therefore enabling future endeavours pertaining to sodium regulation in South African foodstuff
- Faculty of Health Sciences