Academic experts in nutrition science and fatty acids joined the Symposium on Dietary Lipids and Public Health, to showcase how the food industry can transform to support healthy consumer choice
LONDON, Nov. 26, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Last week, Upfield hosted a Symposium on Dietary Lipids and Public Health, in partnership with FoodBev Media. This drew experts from across the globe to join a conversation about consumer confusion, “good fats” and “bad fats,” and the food industry’s role in supporting public health.
Notable participants included Prof Antonis Zampelas (Agricultural University of Athens, University College London), Prof Ingeborg Brouwer (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam) and Dr Elke Trautwein (Kiel University). Through this energetic panel discussion, notable points of consensus were:
- The need to move to a more plant-based food system, to protect and promote public health;
- Support for increased consumer education to clarify guidance around “healthy fats” and “bad fats,” through national dietary guidelines and clear visual aids; and
- A call for regulation to place plant-based foods on an equal footing with meat and dairy, by stopping exemptions vis-à-vis product labelling and disclosure.
“Consumers are confused by multiple studies making conflicting health claims about saturated fats. These are often meta-analyses conducted without paying attention to the nutritional context of the studies, and can vastly misinterpret the data and the quality of research,” said Prof Ingeborg Brouwer, Professor of Nutrition for Healthy Living, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. “To ensure consumers are not confused by conflicting messages, we must ensure our claims are based on the totality of evidence as judged by experts in the field of nutrition and health.”
The session was broadcast via live webinar where a recorded version remains online, and participants hope it will be instructive in helping the food industry to use valuable insights from public health experts to inform product development and communication with consumers.
The symposium was an active example of the food industry learning from academics in the public health field, and paves the way for clear, accurate consumer education in future. Paul Whitehouse, Upfield’s Global Director of Scientific Affairs, called for further collaboration between the private and public sectors, and with academia, in order to support consumers in making healthy choices and decreasing the risk of diet-related chronic disease.
At Upfield, we make people healthier and happier with great tasting, plant-based nutrition products that are better for the planet. As a global plant-based company, Upfield is the #1 producer of plant-based spreads with more than 60 brands, including iconic brands Flora, Rama, Blue Band, ProActiv, Becel, I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter and Country Crock. With headquarters in Amsterdam, we sell our products in over 95 countries and have 17 manufacturing sites throughout the world. The company employs over 3100 associates. Since 1871, we have been the authority in the spreads category which gives us unmatched experience, know-how and inspiration. We are focused on leading in this new era focused on delivering healthier products that are great tasting and have superior quality and helps us deliver on our mission to create “Better Plant-based Future.” For more information, please visit our website at www.Upfield.com.
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