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Information on Salt and Sugar Reduction


Salt and Sugar Reduction

The Government has all along attached great importance to the work of reducing salt and sugar intake among Hong Kong citizens, with the aim to lessen the burden of non-communicable diseases on society through reduction of salt and sugar intake. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that the daily intake of salt for adult should be less than 5 grams (i.e. less than one teaspoon of salt or 2g of sodium), whereas the amount of free sugar consumed daily for adult and children should be less than 10% of the daily energy intake (for an adult having a 2000-Kcal diet per day, the daily free sugar intake should be less than 50 g, i.e. around 3½ table spoon of sugar), so as to prevent various degree of negative impact to the body. Excessive salt intake increases the risk of hypertension, cardiovascular disease, stroke and coronary heart disease, etc, while excessive sugar intake increases the risk of obesity, heart diseases and diabetes etc.

According to the survey conducted by the Department of Health (DH) in 2014/15, the average daily salt intake of Hong Kong people is 8.8 grams, which is higher than the recommendation of WHO. The survey also revealed that nearly 28% of Hong Kong people suffered from hypertension, 50% were overweight or obese, and more than 8% suffered from diabetes. If blood pressure is persistently high, this may lead to serious health problems. According to the dietary studies conducted by the Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department in early years, the estimated average daily sugar intake of adult in Hong Kong is 53 grams.

Initiatives to promote reduction of salt and sugar across the city

The Environment and Ecology Bureau (EEB), CFS, DH and the Committee on Reduction of Salt and Sugar in Food (the Committee) have been committed to promoting salt and sugar reduction along five directions, namely starting from an early age, enhancing transparency of information, encouraging restaurants to reduce salt and sugar, reformulation of prepackaged food, and strengthening publicity and education.

Legislative Council documents

International Advisory Panel on Reduction of Salt and Sugar in Food (From 15 March 2015 to 14 March 2018)

1 Jul 2022