Latvia Salt Action Summary

2017

The WHO held a workshop in Riga, Latvia, on how to reduce salt and other nutrients to improve food for consumption. Issues such as the need to strengthen efforts to reduce salt in food through implementation of salt targets, and monitoring and evaluating impact of salt reduction were discussed.

2013

In 2013, the WHO reviewed salt reduction activities across the European region and produced the report 'Mapping salt reduction initiatives in the WHO European Region'. Below is a summary of salt reduction activities in Latvia, as reported in this document:

Latvia does not have a formal salt reduction program, but recognises that high salt consumption is a problem in the Public Health Strategy 2011-2017. Based on 24-hour dietary recall and food frequency questionnaires only, average daily salt intake is estimated to be 7.1g per day.

Public awareness campaigns have highlighted the dangers of a high salt intake, and meetings with industry regarding salt reduction have taken place.

Together with Estonia, Finland and Lithuania, Latvia is a member of the FINBALT Health Monitoring System, a collaborative project for monitoring health-related behaviour, practices and lifestyles.

 

A new study examined the salt content of bread in Latvia and found that the majority of Latvian bread contains 1.1 to 1.2% salt in flour. Additionally, if an adult consumes on average 250g of bread with 1.2% salt, their daily salt intake would be 3g from bread alone.

2012

Latvia have introduced legal requirements for the standards of food served in schools, kindergartens, hospitals and care homes. Foods high in salt, such as sausages, dried meat, processed meatballs and ravioli are allowed to be served just once a week if they contain at least 70% meat and less than 1.25g of salt per 100g of products, or 60% fish and less than 1.5g of salt per 100g, depending on the main ingredient of the meal.  Salt levels in meals in these institutions are also now controlled.

March 2009

The Republic of Latvia has started salt reduction discussions with representatives of the national food industry, with some support from the Ministry of Health. The priority is to survey the salt status of Latvia, as there is currently no data regarding average salt intakes.