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National Salt and Sugar Reduction Initiative (NSSRI)

Diet-related diseases are among the leading causes of death in the U.S.. The typical American diet is high in sodium and added sugars, which can negatively impact health. In the U.S., more than two-thirds of adults and nearly one-third of children have overweight or obesity. About one-third of adults have high blood pressure. These conditions increase the risk for preventable illness, such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke and some cancers.

The National Salt and Sugar Reduction Initiative (NSSRI) is a partnership of organizations and health authorities from across the country (PDF), convened by the NYC Health Department. The initiative sets voluntary reduction targets for sugar and salt and asks food and beverage companies to commit to meeting them.

The NSSRI released two rounds of preliminary sugar categories and draft targets for technical comment in 2018 and 2019. In February 2021 the initiative released its targets for sugar reduction across 15 categories of foods and beverages.

For more information, email sugar@health.nyc.gov.

Sugar Reduction Targets

After reviewing and integrating two rounds of industry comments, the initiative revised the categories and targets (PDF) and set sugar reduction targets that are gradual and achievable. Industry feedback has helped inform the categories and targets.

For questions or more information, or to request a meeting or to join our distribution list, email sugar@health.nyc.gov.

Salt Reduction Targets

The initial phase of this effort, the National Salt Reduction Initiative, tracked nation-wide progress of sodium reduction in packaged and restaurant foods. Between 2009-2018, there was an 8.5% reduction in sodium levels among the NSRI categories.

In October 2021, the FDA issued final guidance with voluntary targets for reducing sodium in packaged and restaurant food over the next two and half years. These targets were partially informed by our initiative, as well as by similar initiatives in Canada, the U. K. and other countries.

Companies Committed to Reducing Salt

The following companies have committed to reduce salt in their products according to our target levels:

  • Au Bon Pain
  • Bertucci's Italian Restaurant
  • Black Bear European Style Deli
  • Boar's Head Provisions Co.
  • Butterball
  • Campbell Soup Company
  • Delhaize America
  • Dietz & Watson
  • FreshDirect
  • Furmano's
  • Goya Foods
  • Hain Celestial
  • Heinz
  • Hostess
  • Ken's Foods
  • Kraft Foods / Mondēlez International
  • LiDestri Foods / Francesco Rinaldi
  • Mars Food US
  • McCain Foods
  • Premio
  • Red Gold, Inc.
  • Snyder's-Lance, Inc.
  • Starbucks Coffee Company
  • Subway®
  • Target Corporation
  • Unilever
  • Uno Chicago Grill
  • White Rose

To learn more about our salt reduction targets, email salt@health.nyc.gov.

Academic Articles

Process Papers

  • Angell SY, Farley TA. Can we finally make progress on sodium intake?. Am J Public Health. 2012;102(9):1625-7. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2012.300722
  • Angell SY. Emerging Opportunities for Monitoring the Nutritional Content of Processed Foods. Am J Clinical Nutrition. 2010: 91: 298-9. doi: https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/91/2/298/4597043
  • Institute of Medicine (US) Committee on Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake; Henney JE, Taylor CL, Boon CS, editors. Appendix G, National Salt Reduction Initiative Coordinated by the New York City Health Department. In: Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake in the United States. Washington, DC: National Academies Press. 2010; 443–451. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK50950/

Food Supply Analysis

  • Vercammen KA, Dowling EA, Sharkey AL, Curtis CJ, Wang J, Kenney EL, Micha R, Mozaffarian D, Moran AJ. Estimated Reductions in Added Sugar Intake among US Children and Youth in Response to Sugar Reduction Targets. JAND. 2022. doi: 10.1016/j.jand.2022.02.008
  • Moran AJ, Wang J, Sharkey AL, Dowling EA, Curtis CJ, Kessler KA. US Food Industry Progress Toward Salt Reduction, 2009–2018. Am J Public Health. 2022: 112(2): 325-333. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2021.306571.
  • Shangguan S, Mozaffarian D, Sy S, Lee Y, Liu J, Wilde PE, Sharkey AL, Dowling EA, Marklund M, Abrahams-Gessel S, Gaziano TA, Micha R. Health Impact and Cost-Effectiveness of Achieving the National Salt and Sugar Reduction Initiative Voluntary Sugar Reduction Targets in the United States: A Microsimulation Study. Circulation. 2021. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.121.053678
  • Curtis CJ, Clapp J, Niederman SA, Ng SW, Angell SY. US Food Industry Progress during the National Salt Reduction Initiative: 2009-2014. Am J Public Health. 2016:106(10): 1815-1819. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2016.303397
  • Curtis CJ, Niederman SA, Kansagra SM. Availability of Potassium on the Nutrition Facts Panel of US Packaged Foods. JAMA Intern Med. 2013;173(9):828–829. doi: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2013.3807
  • Clapp J, Curtis CJ, Middleton AE, Goldstein GP. (2014). Prevalence of Partially Hydrogenated Oils in US Packaged Foods 2012. Prev Chron Dis. 2012:11(145):1-3. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.5888/pcd11.140161
  • Clapp JE, Niederman SA, Leonard E, Curtis CJ. Changes in Serving Size, Calories, and Sodium Content in Processed Foods From 2009 to 2015. Prev Chronic Dis. 2018;15:E33. doi: 10.5888/pcd15.170265

Intake Analysis

  • Dominianni, Christine & Prasad, Divya & Sharkey, Andrea & Solomon, Elizabeth & Seligson, Amber & Jasek, John. (2024). Sodium Intake and Sodium to Potassium Ratio among New York City Adults in the 2018 Heart Follow-Up Study. Current Developments in Nutrition. 8. 102143. 10.1016/j.cdnut.2024.102143. Available from: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2475299124000775?via%3Dihub
  • Cogswell ME, Patel SM, Yuan K, Gillespie C, Juan W, Curtis CJ, Vigneault M, Clapp J, Roach P, Moshfegh A, Ahuja J, Pehrsson P, Brookmire L, Merritt R. Modeled Changes in US Sodium Intake from Reducing Sodium Concentrations of Commercially Processed and Prepared Foods to Meet Voluntary Standards Established in North America: NHANES. Am J Clinical Nutrition. 2017;106(2):530-540. doi: https://doi.org/10.3945/ajcn.116.145623
  • Angell SY, Yi S, Eisenhower D, Kerker BD, Curtis CJ, Bartley K, Silver LD, Farley TA. Sodium Intake in a Cross-Sectional, Representative Sample of New York City Adults. Am J Pub Health. 2014:104(12): 2409-2416. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2013.301542

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