Every day our meat and meat products land on the plates of hundreds of thousands of consumers. We thus make every effort to ensure that they taste good, are of high quality and contribute to a balanced, nutritious diet.
Tönnies supports a fact-based approach to the topic of meat in the diet. Meat and meat products are important components of a wholesome diet. Together with other animal products, such as fish and eggs, these make a significant contribution to supplying the body with proteins and essential amino acids. Proteins are the basic building blocks of our body. All proteins are created from the same blocks, the amino acids. Of the 20 different amino acids from which all proteins in the human body are created, there are eight amino acids which cannot be created by the body itself. These amino acids, also known as essential amino acids, must be supplied to the body through food. Meat and other animal-based foods contain all essential amino acids in sufficient quantities.
Table of protein content in different foodstuffs
As the quantity of food ingested decreases with age and under-provision of proteins leads to a reduction in muscle mass, an adequate supply of protein is particularly important for older people. In this regard, the German Food Association (Gesellschaft für Ernährung [DGE]) recommends that older people have a 25 per cent higher protein intake with 1.0 g protein per kilogram of body weight. As an abundant source of protein like almost no other foodstuff, meat can thus contribute to a balanced diet. For clear information, the basic nutrition information is given on every end package in the form of a Nutrition Table.
We seek an exchange with scientists and technical experts in order to expand our knowledge on the subject of healthy eating with meat. In the multitude of scientific studies, however, it is not always easy to keep track of things. The recommendations of the German Nutrition Society (DGE) provide suitable guidance for consumers. Further information from the DGE can be found at www.dge.de.
Finally, the consumer should decide for themselves, based on which information and personal experiences he takes as much meat and when to be. He is responsible for his personal well-being and a balanced diet and has sufficient sources of information to eat responsibly for his body and his health.
Salt content in meat and meat products
Salt is one of the most important condiments in the kitchen and is also used in industrial meat production. At Tönnies we use salt in the manufacture of our products for sensory reasons, in other words, for taste, and to ensure maximum possible microbial safety and thus a longer shelf life. Salt is an important ingredient that gives sausage in particular a longer shelf life and improves safety.
What actually is salt? Salt is made up of sodium and chloride ions. Sodium has a weight proportion of approx. 40 per cent. According to some scientific studies, the sodium part is considered one reason that susceptible persons tend to develop high blood pressure if their salt intake is high.
The World Health Organization recommends consuming a maximum of 5 – 6 g of salt per day. Salt consumption in Germany is around 8.4 g / day for women and around 10 g / day for men, so on average you consume more than the recommended amount (www.verbraucherzentrale.de). In order to reduce the intake of salt, many food producers in this country have been checking the salt content in their products for a long time and are constantly improving their recipes.
We at Tönnies have also been working for years on changing individual recipes in sauces, marinades and processed products in order to keep the salt content in our products low. Using software-supported calculation models, we continuously monitor the salt content in our products and recipes and thus reduce it as much as possible while maintaining the same product shelf life. In principle, we therefore also offer a wide range of unseasoned fresh meat in order to enable individual addition of salt. Consumers therefore have the opportunity to decide for themselves how much salt they want to add.
Table of salt content in different meat products
Questions on a healthy diet with meat:
The shelf life of fresh meat depends mainly on the storage temperature and the degree of fragmentation. The smaller the meat is cut, the greater the target for harmful bacteria. Thus, mince should be cooked on the day of purchase. Larger meat cuts generally keep for longer provided that the refrigeration chain is not interrupted. The type of animal also plays an important role. Poultry and offal are significantly more susceptible than pork. In contrast, of all the meat types, beef keeps the longest. For clear information, the maximum storage temperature and the best before date are given on every end-consumer package.
Meat is a so-called resorption agent. This means that it contributes to the improved absorption and processing of plant-based nutrients, particularly iron and zinc, and is itself an important supplier of nutrients. Lean meat and meat products are therefore important for meeting nutritional requirements. It should thus be a fixed part of a balanced and nutritious diet.
Each type of diet has advantages and disadvantages. Someone who follows a vegetarian or vegan diet does not automatically lead to a healthier or healthier life. However, it must be noted that many vegetarians and vegans deal very intensively with their diet and its ingredients. This is also necessary in order to be able to compensate for an insufficient supply with other foods. For some vitamins, such as vitamin B12, the inclusion of artificial vitamin supplements may be necessary. By eating meat, many essential nutrients can be absorbed much more easily, so that you can eat healthy and wholesome even without specialist knowledge. For these reasons, well-known nutrition experts, such as the German Nutrition Society (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Ernährung), recommend consuming meat on a regular basis.
At the moment, the Nutri-Score is only used for very few of our article segments. In principle, we provide nutritional information on all consumer packs. Even with voluntary information, the nutritional values are declared in the usual tabular form in accordance with the legal requirements. A simplified nutritional labeling, as in the French Nutri-Score, obviously allows a better overview of the composition, but has some technical weaknesses. For example, the French authorities have given cheese a special role. The “cheese rule” means that cheese is generally rated better than comparable products, even with a high fat and salt content. In other countries such as Germany, however, this preferred status of cheese leads to a distorted assessment of the nutritional profiles.
You can find out how the Nutri-Score is calculated at www.bmel.de/SharedDocs/Downloads/DE/_Ernaehrung/Lebensmittel-Kennzeichnung/nutri-score-dt-excel-berechnungstabelle.html
Children and the elderly in particular have an increased need for protein. While proteins are essential for growth in adolescents, the need for proteins to maintain muscle functions increases with age. Like hardly any other food, meat can help you to consume the recommended intake quantities. In this way, the need for minerals and many important vitamins can be met.
For more information regarding babies and seniors, see www.fokus-fleisch.de/warum-fleisch-f%C3%BCr-babys-und-senioren-wichtig-ist.