Food Safety Authority introduces a new online calorie calculator
The Food Safety Authority of Ireland has launched a new calorie calculator online. The idea of the calculator which is called “MenuCal” is for businesses in the food industry to use it in order to include the calorie count of their products on their menu’s.
The online calculator will be made available to Ireland’s 22,000 food service businesses free of charge. As a result MenuCal will enable them to work out the calorie content in the foods they sell and serve to customers.
The online technology was developed by the Food Safety Authority after many food businesses expressed concern that they did not have the expertise, resources or funds to accurately calculate calories for display on their menus.
Dr Mary Flynn of the FSAI explained the motivation of the authority to introduce the online calorie calculator saying “Our research shows that there is an overwhelming demand and desire by consumers for displaying calories on menus and that nine out of ten consumers want calorie information displayed beside the price of food and drink items on the menu. We knew that a concern for food businesses was to be able to provide this information accurately and to be able to do it themselves.”
The news will be largely welcomed by Irish consumers because it can be difficult when dinning out to know what ingredients are used in our meals. The idea of displaying calories on menus means that Irish people will be able to make more informed choices about what they eat. This method has been implemented in places like the United States and could help Ireland tackle its obesity problem.