Release Date: 24/05/2012
Takeaways in Richmond upon Thames have embraced an awareness scheme to make fast food healthier for customers.
Nine foods outlets have been awarded certificates after going the extra mile to offer healthier food in the borough. They have been given a poster and menu to display so customers know that the foods on offer and ingredients used are better for them.
A nutritionist employed by the Council visited food outlets in Whitton and Heathfield to explain to owners how they could make meals healthier with simple changes. The visit gave takeaway owners food for thought and nine were eager to make changes.
The Healthier Catering Commitment is a voluntary scheme, run by Richmond Council in partnership with NHS South West London. The scheme recognises that takeaways are eaten as an occasional treat but that takeaway businesses can make a few changes to reduce the amount of salt and saturated fat in the meals sold. Simple changes can make a difference, and participating takeaways highlight their efforts to serve food that is better for you. For example, using semi skimmed milk in coffee as standard, reducing salt in food, using healthier mono and poly unsaturated cooking oil and offering smaller portions.
Cllr Virginia Morris, Richmond Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “I am delighted the scheme has been well received by local businesses in Whitton and Heathfield and several are doing their bit for improving the health of our community.
“I’d encourage residents to look for the posters and menus in the takeaways when they are buying a meal. I also hope other businesses in the area follow their example and join up.
“We’re not telling businesses what to sell, but we are encouraging them to offer food prepared in a healthier way where possible. We have done this by showing business owners how they can keep their customers healthier without spending more on ingredients, in some cases they’ve made savings.“
The businesses accredited to the scheme in Whitton are: BBQ Kebab, Cafe La Parisiene, Karens Sandwich Bar, Fung's Kitchen, Golden Grill, Miki's Fish Bar and Coffee Ways.
In Heathfield Annapurna and The Imperial Café are part of the scheme.
David Tchilingirian, Registered Public Health Nutritionist, said: “Many Londoners suffer health problems, in part, due to poor diets. This project encourages local businesses to swap ingredients and offer other tasty, healthier options that customers will love. Our work and advice has been well received in Whitton and Heathfield and the business owners deserve praise for their customer care.”
Diets that are high in saturated fat and salt can lead to high blood pressure and cholesterol which in turn can lead to stroke and coronary heart disease. The Healthy Catering Commitment is a London - wide scheme led by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health and supported by the Greater London Assembly.
If you are a journalist and would like further information about this press release, contact Elinor Ridgway on 020 8487 5159