Campaigners call for KFC and Pizza Hut to follow US lead in calorie labelling
2nd October 2008
KFC and Pizza Hut have announced they will be giving customers the calorie information they want, but only in the US. The calorie content of different products will appear on menu boards, allowing customers to quickly and easily choose healthier options, in company-owned stores across the states.
In the UK, customers will not be given this choice. “KFC and Pizza Hut should treat their European customers as openly as they do their American customers and provide nutrition details at the point of sale here,” said Anna Glayzer, a health campaigner for The Food Commission. “At the moment customers have to rely on guess work if they want to make healthier choices.”
The Food Commission recently undertook research which showed that even nutrition experts could not work out healthier choices from menu descriptions alone. Members of the public were also baffled by menu descriptions, frequently misidentifying the wrong foods as healthier choices.
“People are eating out more than they used to,” said Glayzer. “If companies are genuinely serious about wanting to offer healthy choices, they need to give customers up front information. If they can do it in the States, then there is no reason why they should not do it here.”
Notes to editors
KFC and Pizza Hut maintain that nutritional information is currently available in UK stores and online. However, The Food Commission says it is hugely unrealistic to expect customers to question staff about the calorie content of every menu item, or to trawl through company websites looking for nutritional information.
Yum! Brands Inc, the company which owns both KFC and Pizza Hut, has called on the U.S. Congress to enact federal legislation that would create uniform, menu board guidelines for all restaurants which sell prepared food, to allow consistent education of the public about the nutritional value of the food they eat. Yum! Brands Inc has made no such call on the UK government.
Link to Food Commission research into experts’ and public’s inability to identify healthier fast foods. http://www.foodmagazine.org.uk/articles/fast_food_menu_labelling/
Link to Yum! Brands Inc press release regarding US calorie labelling. http://www.yum.com/news/pressreleases/100108.asp
For more information contact Jessica Mitchell, 020 7837 2250, firstname.lastname@example.org
The Food Commission is an independent, voluntary body campaigning for safer, healthier food in the UK.
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