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The debate around ‘ultra-processed foods’: in the Sid Valley

  • by JW

Local interest and concern – from the British Hearth Foundation, to the hospitality industry, to the Sid Valley Food Bank.


Yesterday’s news was dominated by the latest research into ‘UPFs’ – and the Herald also took up the story, reporting that ultra-processed foods increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases, with a particular story-line that the British Heart Foundation links processed foods to diseases.

Sidmouth has a BHF shop on Fore Street – where there are not only volunteering opportunities and quality pre-loved goods on sale, but also advice on how to minimise cardiovascular disease, with an excellent free booklet on ‘how to eat better’.

What are other organisations and local businesses saying about ultra-processed foods?

Here’s a good example of what many in the hospitality trade in the Sid Valley are trying to do for visitors:

As a café, we offer a wide variety of freshly prepared food and cake for all dietary preferences, all made in our kitchen.  We use local suppliers and producers as much as we can (bread, eggs, meat, ice cream, coffee, tea, fish, beer, cider are all supplied locally) and avoid frozen products, meals and ultra processed foods and oils wherever possible. 

For locals who are finding it difficult to budget for food, the Sid Valley Food Bank has got some excellent “Easy Recipes, Hints and Tips for managing on a budget” – which don’t involve loads of UPFs – and they also provide a link to the very good BBC Food’s £1 dinners.

So, there is clearly awareness locally of the issues around ultra-processed foods – as our local press continues to report on these stories which are clearly of interest to its readers. Something for these news pages to return to no doubt.