Dietitian at NFA Anette Jansson told Food Navigator that since the 26 year old organisation has been around for so long without an image makeover, it was often considered “uncool”. “We have been told that we appear old fashioned. Though keyhole has a Facebook page which is quite popular, we are planning additional social media initiatives to appear cooler.”
NFA was recently granted 4m krona (€426,489) of government funds to encourage people to eat right. Jansson added that the social media initiatives wouldonly be a part of how it spends the funds. “We welcome this extra money and will use it to communicate healthy dietary options to health professionals and consumers,” she said.
NFA will work in collaboration with the National Board of Health and the Public Health Agency. The majority of the money will be spent on encouraging health professionals talk about good eating habits to their patients and on “continued dialogues with food manufacturers to use our keyhole labelling symbol”, added Jansson.
Some companies that currently use the label in Sweden include retailers Coop and ICA, producers Orkla, Unilever, Arla and Findus and several cereal producers Fazer and Pagens.
The keyhole, a nutrition standard, which was established in Sweden in 1989, has now become a common Nordic label for healthier food products in Denmark, Norway and Sweden.
A study published by the NFA last year showed that 80% of Swedish people thought the keyhole labelling system was a good thing while 95% said they had heard of it.
Sweden’s health history
The recent funding is part of Sweden’s long history of attention to health issues. A comprehensive public health policy was adopted by the Swedish Parliament in April 2003. The overall aim of the policy was to create good eating habits and safe food for its people, according to a WHO report.
“We want consumers to have such knowledge that they can make informed health choices. With this mission, we can continue the work we began in 2014,” said Eva Sundberg, director for food and meals at NFA.