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Family Food survey reveals fruit and veg decline

The 75th annual government survey of UK food purchasing, now called the Family Food survey, was published in March.

Forget tomorrow, the future is already here

There is much talk these days about the impact of the Internet of Things – the new interconnected world in which machines share data to radically enhance intelligence and control – on the future of manufacturing, and food and drink manufacture in particular.

Evidence for benefits of resistant starch is growing

Vegetables and starchy carbs, such as potatoes, bread, pasta, rice and other grains, are currently the main sources of dietary fibre, with some provided by fruit, nuts and pulses.

Ireland will be crucial to the UK post Brexit

News that full-year exports of UK food and drink exceeded £20bn for the first time in 2016 – up 10.5% on 2015 – puts what will happen after Brexit firmly in the spotlight.

Sugar reduction aims thwarted by sweetener confusion

Sugar does more than sweeten foods – it provides bulk and has functional attributes that are difficult to replicate, such as moisture management and shelf-life, texture and flavour generation.

Any US-UK trade deal will come at a price

Britain’s prospects of securing a trade deal with the US post-Brexit were one of the main items up for discussion (along with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization) during Prime Minister Theresa May’s meeting with President Donald Trump last month.

Can gut bugs promote good health?

The interest in bugs – in this case those that inhabit the human gut – continues to grow as research reveals the fascinating symbiotic relationships that exist between them and us, and the impact of these on our health.

Food and drink sector squares up to Brexit challenges

As 2017 opens, without doubt, we are entering unknown territory. The biggest question facing UK food and drink is what direction of travel the government will disclose for Brexit in advance of Article 50 being triggered, probably in March.

New protein sources – new allergens?

Novel foods, in particular insects, are being billed as a sustainable source of protein to meet future needs, as the global population grows and becomes more prosperous and climate change takes hold.

Marmite and Toblerone point to trouble ahead

The recent spat between Unilever and Britain’s biggest retailer Tesco over the Marmite brand owner’s attempt to raise its price, was a clear sign of things to come in life after the Brexit vote.

Is a lack of creativity hindering novel foods?

Novel foods that are aiming to save the planet in some way – whether it be sustainable protein, sources of uncommon essential nutrients, or alternatives to animal proteins – are forming definite growing trends as part of our health-conscious society.

How mindful eating can boost positive dietary choices

The concept of mindful eating as a means of driving healthy dietary choices is attracting attention.

So, who should pay for nutrition research?

Concern is growing that the science underpinning nutrition is being attacked by some public health researchers and lobbyists who refuse to accept a role for industry in commissioning nutrition research, regardless of any controls put in place to ensure the complete independence of this work.

Food fads: should we do more to protect consumers?

We have taken an interest in the future of food we since forming since Bingham and Jones. But there are some moments in development that get you really thinking about the bigger picture and asking other questions – such as, is it really ok to develop to consumer perceptions if their perceptions are wrong?

Diet and nutrition survey results are a mixed bag

The latest National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) results reveal a few improvements.

Many small food firms are using illegal labels

Many small food and drink manufacturers could soon be breaking the law – if they are not already – by putting misleading and, therefore, illegal information on their packs.

Grocery supply chain is set for roller coaster rise

Amazon looks set on making a major land grab for Britain's food and drink market. Having embarked on a raft of new initiatives, covering everything from a collaborative venture with Morrisons to moves into home food deliveries in London, the online retail giant clearly has big ambitions to roll out ideas already tested Stateside.

Retailers should trust suppliers’ innovation teams

Since the big ‘re-set’ of the supermarket shelves, where scores of products vied for a reduced and downsized space allocation, we have seen an escalation in own-label activity.

Government advice on vitamin D supplements

In the UK, one-in-five older children and adults has a low vitamin D level in their blood.

Obesity strategy gets the thumbs down

Prime Minister Theresa May hasn’t pleased anybody with the childhood obesity strategy, which was slipped out during the parliamentary recess while she was on holiday walking in Switzerland.

Tap into sub-trends and ‘foodie fads’ in your product development

Analysing, reporting and acting on food trends have become big business in the past few years.

Labelling of sugar content under scrutiny

Globally, governments are thinking about the challenges of communicating information regarding the sugars contents of foods.

UK food researchers miss out on EU projects

Andrea Leadsom, the former Conservative contender for prime minister, had her first official outing as environment secretary last month at the launch of the Industry Approved Apprenticeship Programmes from the National Skills Academy for Food and Drink.

Government sat-fat advice remains unchanged

The report from the pressure group the National Obesity Forum (NOF), branded as irresponsible by Public Health England and discordant with the international consensus, criticised the government’s Eatwell guide and official UK dietary reference values (DRVs), particularly those for fat and carbohydrates.

Food sector licks its wounds after Brexit

Despite all signs to the contrary, I don’t think many of us on the Remain side really expected a Brexit vote in our heart of hearts. Which made the result to leave the EU even more of a shock when we woke up on Friday June 24.