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Light, Lite, Lighter . . .

Prompted by a discussion in the syns value section, about a Tesco Lighter Choices sandwich, I did a bit of research into what Light, or "Lite" (I can barely bring myself to type that horrible word!) or Lighter actually mean.

Light or "lite" means that the product must be at least 30% lower in one value such as calories or fat than a standard product. Check the label - it must list exactly what has been reduced and the amount, ie “light - 30% less calories.” So it will be "better" than the standard product, but not necessarily "good", and may well contain quite a lot of syns. It may be lower in fat, but higher in sugar, or vice-versa.

And of course "lower" doesn't necessarily mean "low". It all depends where you start from!

Extra-Light and Ultra-Light are no longer allowed to be used, as from the beginning of this year. Which is why Flora has rebranded one of its products as "Lighter than Light".

And "lighter"? Well, as far as I have been able to find out, it has no legal definition at all (please feel free to contradict me if I am wrong). Which may be why that Tesco sandwich has 14 syns!

Manufacturers have to comply with the law, but only just. They are not in business to look after us, but to look after themselves and their shareholders. It is up to us to look after ourselves, and if that means squinting at the small print on the back of a package, well sorry, but that's the way it is.
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I use to work in the food industry developing new products for M&S and Waitrose... lighter also must be 30% less than original x
As for "low" fat, that must be less than 3% fat.... "fat free" is less than 0.2% fat I think (left industry 2 years ago and have memory of goldfish).

Strange re the sandwich though... was it white bread? Some of the egg sandwich filler pots are free, e.g. eat smart, strange hey!
I ate this sandwich on Saturday and it was brown bread! I feel cheated that it was 14 syns though, as I thought I'd picked the 'healthiest' one.
I had a look at some Tesco sandwiches the other day and I wouldn't have eaten any of them. Some were brown and some were a kind of granary, but none was wholemeal. And all of them had some kind of spread and mayonnaise listed in the ingredients.

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