Healthier sandwich choices needed

Sandwich
Not enough meat-free sandwich options, says study
  (Photo:  )

Food manufacturers are failing to provide healthier sandwich options for people trying to eat well, according to a new survey. 

Eating Better carried out a snapshot survey of 620 sandwiches and wraps from eight supermarkets and four high street sandwich chains and found that 570 sandwiches (92%) contained meat, fish, or cheese, leaving little options for vegans. Just 17 of the sample (less than 3%) were without meat, fish, cheese and eggs.

Eating Better also claimed that the sandwiches on offer were contributing to environmental issues as it said farm animals were responsible for around 15% of greenhouse gases. It said reducing the meat in our diets was an easy way to reduce environmental damage. In addition, the survey also found that sandwiches without meat, fish or cheese were more likely to be healthier choices with lower levels of saturated fat, salt and calories.

Eating Better is calling on food companies to provide a better and more varied choice of healthy environmentally-friendly sandwiches and wraps with vegetables and pulses to help consumers go meat-free at lunchtime. It promoted options including falafel, hummus, Mexican three bean, Moroccan vegetables, Veggie Bombay, chickpea & sweet potato, avocado & herb, artichoke & basil as the ones to stock up on.

Sue Dibb, of Eating Better, said: “Our research shows that many people are trying to be planet- and health-conscious and looking to eat less meat. Going meat-free at lunchtime is a simple way to cut down. But consumers seeking healthier sandwiches with a lower environmental impact are being let down.

“We’re calling on food manufacturers and retailers to help consumers choose healthier, environmentally-friendly diets by offering a better range of delicious sandwiches made with vegetables and pulses. The good news for consumers is that it doesn’t need to cost more. We found non-meat or fish sandwiches cost less on average.”

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