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Heart Foundation Welcomes Health Star Rating System

Heart Foundation Welcomes Health Star Rating System

The Heart Foundation has welcomed the Government’s decision to adopt the Australian Health Star Rating System which will help consumers identify more healthy food products. The Foundation has been advocating for ‘front of pack’ labelling for many years to make it easier for parents and children to make healthier food choices. It has campaigned through the ‘Stop the Heartbreak’ campaign for labelling that is in a non-numerical graphic form.

Heart Foundation Food Industry Setting Manager, Dave Monro says the adoption of the Health Star Rating system (HSR) is good news. “Current nutrition labelling on packaged goods is confusing and poorly understood, so the introduction of the HSR system is a significant step forward in terms of providing consumers with ‘at a glance’ nutrition information on foods.

“Front of Pack labelling has been the subject of debate and the star system provides a ‘win win’ situation for public health organisations, consumers and food industry groups. We believe the star system will also provide an incentive for food companies to reformulate foods. As it’s voluntary, we’d strongly urge food companies to support the system - to be effective the labelling needs to be on most foods and drinks,” he said.

The HSR system is similar to our energy-efficiency star ratings for domestic appliances. It rates packaged goods from a half to five stars. The number of stars is determined by an algorithm that considers overall nutritional value of the food. It was developed as part of the Australian and New Zealand Ministers’ Food Forum.

The Heart Foundation is the charity that works to stop New Zealanders dying prematurely from heart disease. It is committed to promoting heart health through funding vital research, promoting heart healthy lifestyles and advancing cardiac care.

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