California Prunes has launched a new campaign to promote prunes as a healthy snack option for kids.
It comes as public health authorities seek to tackle rising rates of childhood obesity and excessive sugar intake among UK children by encouraging parents to “look for 100 calorie snacks, two a day max”, to help their children to eat more healthily.
The new initiative is fronted by two of California Prunes’ brand ambassadors - TV chef, author and founder of Simply Good Food TV, Peter Sidwell and Hala El-Shafie consultant nutritionist and registered dietitian.
Prune It for Kids was officially launched at the Good Housekeeping Institute in London at a media event featuring long-standing California prunes brand ambassador, celebrity chef Rosemary Shrager.
Attending journalists and bloggers watched Rosemary and Peter cooking together to produce a selection of new Prune It for Kids recipes, while El-Shafie provided a nutritional and health commentary.
Prune It for Kids messaging includes showing parents how California prunes can be used to create an appetising, natural – as opposed to processed or packaged – snack, well in line with the 100-calorie recommendations put forward by Public Health England (PHE).
“Eating natural, unprocessed foods, which offer sound nutritional benefits, and which can easily be incorporated to help reduce excessive added sugar and fat in the diet is a more important lesson to teach to children than counting calories,” commented El-Shafie.
Easting between five and nine prunes (a handful, depending on their size) equates to less than 100kcal, while a 30g portion is only 65kcal, way below the PHE cut-off of 100 kcal.
Esther Ritson-Elliott, European marketing director for the California Prune Board, described the new initiative was a natural progression of the Prune It campaign, first launched in 2016, which provides guidance on how California prunes can be used to reduce the fat and added sugar content of a variety of recipes while at the same time delivering essential nutrients and proven health benefits.
“We absolutely welcome any advice that encourages parents to be more mindful of their children’s eating habits and acknowledges the need to reduce the amount of added sugar and fat that children are consuming,” she said.
“Peter has created some exciting recipes which children will love sampling and which are also simple to follow allowing young people to join their parents in the kitchen to begin honing their cooking skills.”