FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE  - 27th March 2013




The typical British breakfast of toast and cereal contains unhealthy levels of sugar and salt according to the latest product reports from Ethical Consumer which has found bread as salty as crisps and cereals as sugary as biscuits.

In its survey Ethical Consumer found that bread is the single biggest contributor to salt in the average person's diet with six of the top ten best selling wholemeal breads containing as much salt in a single slice as a bag of crisps (1).

Breakfast cereal was found to be similarly unhealthy with the Ethical Consumer survey revealing that 10 of the top 15 best selling breakfast cereals were 'high in sugar'.

This included All Bran and Special K which are marketed on their alleged health benefits and brands including Frosties and Coco Pops which are marketed to children.

Co-author of the Ethical Consumer Product Guide to bread and breakfast cereals 

Jane Turner said:

“Breakfast is now widely acknowledged as being one of the most important meals of the day. However our survey shows that by eating a breakfast of cereal and toast people can unwittingly be getting an unhealthy dose of sugar and salt.”

“The Department of Health set a voluntary target for bakers to reduce their levels of salt to a maximum of 1g per 100g by 2012. Most packaged bread now meets that target but that still means that a toddler would have all of its recommended daily salt intake by eating just four average slices of bread. And this is before any toppings or sandwich fillings are added.”

In the Ethical Consumer survey two packaged wholemeal loaves, Roberts and Braces, exceeded the Department of Health's voluntary level of salt.

In its product guide to breakfast cereals Ethical Consumer reveal that four brands were over a third sugar (by weight) –  Frosties, Crunchy Nut, Sugar Puffs and children's top selling brand Coco Pops. Weight for weight Frosties have the same sugar content as chocolate chip cookies.

The same company that makes the aptly named Sugar Puffs brand also makes Puffed Wheat, a brand aimed at the 45 year+ market which is 17 times less sugary and has twice the amount of fibre.

The top ethical best buys for bread include Paul's (2), Biona and Village Bakery.

The top ethical best buys for breakfast cereal include Biofair, Alara and Infinity Foods.





1 A 32.5g bag of Walkers ready salted crisps contains 0.5g of salt.

2 The Paul's brand is made by Soyfoods and is not to be confused with PAUL French bakery shops.

3 A copy of the Ethical Consumer product guides to bread and breakfast cereal are available here: