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Nutrients 2017, 9(8), 901;

Applying a Consumer Behavior Lens to Salt Reduction Initiatives

School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sports Science, University College Dublin, Dublin 4, Ireland
School of Epidemiology and Public Health, Faculty of Medicine, 600 Peter Morand Crescent, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON K1G 5Z3, Canada
Food, Consumer Behaviour and Health Research Centre, University of Surrey, Guildford GU2 7XH, UK
Avila Research, Cabinteely, Dublin 18, Ireland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 June 2017 / Revised: 10 August 2017 / Accepted: 16 August 2017 / Published: 18 August 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reducing Dietary Sodium and Improving Human Health)
Full-Text   |   PDF [245 KB, uploaded 18 August 2017]


Reformulation of food products to reduce salt content has been a central strategy for achieving population level salt reduction. In this paper, we reflect on current reformulation strategies and consider how consumer behavior determines the ultimate success of these strategies. We consider the merits of adopting a ‘health by stealth’, silent approach to reformulation compared to implementing a communications strategy which draws on labeling initiatives in tandem with reformulation efforts. We end this paper by calling for a multi-actor approach which utilizes co-design, participatory tools to facilitate the involvement of all stakeholders, including, and especially, consumers, in making decisions around how best to achieve population-level salt reduction. View Full-Text
Keywords: consumer behavior; multi-actor; reformulation; salt reduction consumer behavior; multi-actor; reformulation; salt reduction
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Regan, Á.; Kent, M.P.; Raats, M.M.; McConnon, Á.; Wall, P.; Dubois, L. Applying a Consumer Behavior Lens to Salt Reduction Initiatives. Nutrients 2017, 9, 901.

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