Canadian health ministers reportedly met in St. John’s, Newfoundland, to discuss several health initiatives, including a plan to reduce the daily recommended intake of sodium to 2,300 mg from 3,400 mg by 2016. According to a September 14, 2010, press release issued by Alberta Health and Wellness Minister Gene Zwozdesky, government officials in attendance considered (i) “a framework for action to promote healthy weights (including reducing childhood obesity)”; (ii) “a commitment to make marketing healthy foods for children a priority”; and (iii) “supporting the call of Canadian Premiers for everyone to lower their personal sodium intake (including encouraging the food industry to meet voluntary targets for sodium reduction in prepared and packaged foods).”
The ministers have reportedly accepted the new target sodium levels, which were the subject of closed-door meetings with Canadian Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq. “Our interim goal is to see the Canadian populations reduce their average sodium intake by one-third by 2016,” Aglukkaq was quoted as saying. “We all have a role to play. Government, community leaders and the private sector must work together to create the conditions that make the healthy choices the easier choices. The reduction of sodium in our diets cannot be driven by government alone.” See CBS News and The Globe and Mail, September 14, 2010.