ARCHIVED Multi-Stakeholder Working Group on Sodium Reduction (2007-2010)

The Multi-Stakeholder Working Group on Sodium Reduction (Sodium Working Group, or SWG) was established in 2007 with the mandate of developing a population-health strategy to reduce sodium in the diets of Canadians. The strategy was to be in line with the recommendations of the Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) report of the  Institute of Medicine of the U.S. National Academies (IOM). This mandate was achieved with the SWG’s release of its report, the Sodium Reduction Strategy for Canada on July 29, 2010, marking the beginning of the implementation of Health Canada’s own sodium reduction activities. As Health Canada moves forward with its plan to lower sodium intake in Canada, it will seek guidance as needed from the Food Expert Advisory Committee (FEAC, formerly the Food Regulatory Advisory Committee).

The SWG included representatives from food manufacturing and food service industry groups, health-focused non-governmental organizations, the scientific community, consumer advocacy groups, health professional organizations and government. It was chaired by a representative of Health Canada with the support of a steering committee made up of a vice-chair from the scientific community, and a member each from the food industry and a health-focussed non-governmental organization. Health Canada provided secretariat, technical and logistical support to the SWG.

Each stakeholder organization was invited to submit one or two nominees to participate in the Working Group. Members of the SWG were appointed, based on nominations put forward by the participating organizations, to ensure a mix of disciplines, skill sets and perspectives. Consideration was also given to geographical representation. Terms of Reference were established for this working group.

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