How much attention do you give the list of ingredients on the ready-made snacks you buy for your toddler? Would you be shocked to discover that some baby and toddler snacks contain a staggering 30 ingredients?! That does’t seem right to me, but it’s a reality.
Increasingly concerned about the quality and quantity of unnecessary ingredients in some baby finger foods and toddler snacks, Organix commissioned a survey to learn parents’ attitudes to snacks for little ones, and find out what they think needs to change.
The survey found that 85% of parents are shocked to find some baby finger foods and toddler snacks contain almost the same level of salt as a regular bag of adult crisps, with 82% shocked that extra salt is added to some baby and toddler snacks to boost the flavour. When you start weaning your baby, you’re always warned to never add salt to their food, so it seems scandalous that food companies are putting it into products aimed at little ones.
88% of the parents surveyed were also shocked that some of the foods sold in the baby aisle are not protected by regulations. This also seems like madness, given how vital nutrition is to the development of a growing child.
What needs to change?
- 68% of parents wish there were healthier options in the supermarket
- 72% complain about the lack of savoury snack choices compared to sweet
- 63% of parents want brands to be more transparent about food labelling
- 31% of parents say it’s not always clear from labels what ingredients are included in the food.
- Parents also want healthy food choices when out and about – Family attractions, theme parks and soft play centres are the hardest places to find healthy snacks for babies and toddlers
Top things to look for when you’re choosing toddler snacks:
So what should you have you eye out for when you’re at the shops?
- Really long ingredient lists: go for fewer ingredients.
- Added ingredients: there’s no need for anything unnecessary, so avoid foods with added salt, sugar or flavourings.
- Unrecognisable ingredients: go for simple ingredients – look at the back of the packet and choose something with simple ingredients – things that you recognise.
- The organic logo – If you see an organic logo on pack you can feel sure what you buy has been made to the highest standards.
I’ve always been a bit suspicious of mass produced food when it comes to babies and toddlers. I’d much rather make my own snacks for them, but when I was out and about I always stuck to Organix products when I was getting treats for my boys when they were little – they absolutely adored them, plus it gave me peace of mind that they weren’t eating junk!
Sam and Arlo were ravenous toddlers… and they still are now to be perfectly honest! I tend to batch cook things like these mini quiches to have in the freezer to pop into packed lunches or take on day trips. They’re perfect for little hands, or to pop straight into your mouth whole if you’re a hulking great eight-year-old!!!!
TV personality and food investigator, mum of two, Cherry Healey has been investigating what’s hiding in some of the baby finger foods and toddler snacks marketed for little ones. You can see what she found in this video…
Join the campaign!
What’s your experience of toddler snacks? How closely do you check the ingredients? Do you trust the packaging of these snacks? Join the debate, share your views, take photos of foods and food labels and share them with #FoodYouCanTrust.
What is the Organix No Junk Journey?
Organix is committed to setting standards in its foods, never adding anything unnecessary, and providing parents with peace of mind through the Organix No Junk Promise. From paying close attention to food labelling, to making sure that children have a clear understanding about the food they eat, and of course minimising the amount of junk in their diets. Organix makes weaning and finger foods to help little ones discover new shapes, textures and tastes in the early stages of their development, and a range of Goodies toddler foods that help make exploring all kinds of food fun, safe and enjoyable as children grow up.
You can find out more about why I joined the campaign in my blog post – Why I’ve Joined the Organix No Junk Journey
Disclosure: This is part of a series of partnered posts I’m working on with Organix to promote their No Junk Journey campaign. It’s an issue I feel strongly about and want to share with you here on my blog.