The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has released a database and mobile app that score some 80,000 food products using three criteria—nutrition, ingredient concerns and processing—to inform consumers that “popular brands in many categories are not so much food as they are conveyances for excessive amounts of sugar, salt and preservatives.”
According to an October 27, 2014, EWG press release, the average product rated in the Food Scores database contains 14 ingredients and 446 mg of salt per 100 g, and it has a 58 percent chance of containing added sugar, 46 percent chance of artificial or natural flavor and 14 percent chance of artificial coloring. The guide allows consumers to search by product name, company or category and provides examples of comparable products with different scores. EWG’s press release specifically calls out stuffing and stuffing mixes as products with the highest likelihood of containing added sugars. According to Bloomberg Businessweek, 18 percent of the rated products earned a green (best) score and 25 percent were ranked red (worst), with most products falling somewhere in the middle. See Bloomberg Businessweek, October 27, 2014.