An online toolkit has been designed to help fish and chip shops across the UK respond to consumer demand for healthier options.
Put together by the British Takeaway Campaign (BTC), the toolkit is based on best practice in the takeaway sector and consists of four steps that it believes most takeaways can implement. These measures include offering smaller portion sizes, making sure water and low-sugar drinks are available, not adding salt after cooking and frying in the optimum conditions whilst using cooking oil that contains the least amount of saturated fat possible, with no artificial trans fats.
Commenting on the launch, British Takeaway Campaign (BTC) chair Ibrahim Dogus said: “Most takeaway restaurants are small, independent businesses who face a confusing array of complex guidance and are unsure about where to start. Meanwhile, 42% see increased demand for healthier menu options being a key challenge over the next two years. Supporting these businesses, especially at a time when they face real financial pressures, such as rising rents, business rates and skills shortages, will ensure they can continue to thrive whilst doing their bit to promote healthy eating.”
The BTC acknowledges that there are many takeaways which are already taking practical action to promote healthier eating. For instance, its research shows that 96% of takeaways offer vegetarian options, whilst 73% offer smaller portion sizes. Meanwhile, 65% offer low fat dishes and 59% provide low salt choices.
The British Takeaway Campaign is calling on the Government to recognise how far the sector has already come and to work with it by providing a free online calorie calculator to help takeaways provide consistent and reliable nutritional information to their customers. Nine in 10 takeaway restaurants say they would use such a tool if it was available, says BTC.
It is also calling for a joined-up up approach to tackle obesity with everyone from Government and business to schools and parents playing a part in making a difference.
Download the toolkit by clicking here.