Do you know what’s really in baby and toddler snacks? Some of the contents might actually shock you.
If you go to the shop and head to the baby/toddler snacks aisle, you’d expect everything there to be nutritionally balanced and healthy, wouldn’t you? After all, these brands are targeting babies and toddlers. You’d certainly not expect them to be packed with salts, fats and sugars.
Especially when the front of the pack claims that the snacks contain natural ingredients, or that they are healthy and nutritionally balanced.
We’ve recently made a shocking discovery….
Take a look at this video where Cherry Healey, a Mum to two and a food investigator, explores what really is in the snacks that we give to our kids.
Just like Cherry, we’re also going to be teaming up with Organix over the next few months. I am so passionate about their new nationwide ‘junk busting’ campaign’. Alongside Organix, we are on a mission to investigate what is hiding in some of the baby finger foods and toddler snacks, that are marketed at our little ones. We also want to make changes to regulations and to make all parents more aware of what is really in these packets. We’d love for you to join us on our ‘No Junk Journey’. You can find out more of how you can be involved below.
My Kid Eats The Healthy Snacks, Right?
I’ve always tried to be really mindful of what we give to Evie. As a family, we are really healthy and we’ve always tried to make good food choices for our daughter.
Alongside giving her regular fruity and vegetable snacks, we do also occasionally pick up some toddler snacks from the supermarket. We are on the go a lot. After having one too many squished bananas in my handbag, we find packaged toddler snacks a lot easier to carry around with us. Plus, they’re they’re healthy and nutritionally balanced right?
Well, so we thought. Organix sent us on a mission of our very own. To explore the baby and toddler aisle in our local supermarket. They told us to go and have a peek art what is in some of the snacks that are on the market. Especially some that we have previously bought for Evie.
What’s really in baby and toddlers snacks?
I stood in the baby and toddler snacks aisle for quite sometime. I read different packets of snacks made by a whole variety of brands. Lots of packets had big claims on the front of them.
Here were some phrases I kept seeing on the ‘front’ of packs; ‘gluten free’, ‘natural’, ‘no artificial ingredients’ and ‘nutritionist approved’. But, what do these claims really mean and can we trust them?
I am very guilty for normally just reading the front of the packet only. In the past, I have simply trusted brands. These foods are in the baby aisle, so why would they be bad? Plus, with the claims on the front, like so many others, I’ve just presumed that they are healthy. I normally grab something quickly, put it in my trolley and go.
So, I was more than a little bit shocked to turn over the packets this time and read what’s really in some of the baby and toddler snacks that we normally get. One particular kids snack (a really basic biscuity thing) that claims to be nutritionally balanced really stood out to me. It contained over 25 different ingredients! Why?
I also noticed that another popular kids snack that states it has ‘no artificial ingredients’ (a good thing), had way more salt than it should have (a bad thing).
I then went into the grown up ‘snack’ aisle which contained biscuits, crisps and other snacks. I was shocked to see that some baby and toddler food contains just as much salt, sometimes more, as some large adult packets of crisps. We also noticed the same with a few of the baby biscuits and that some baby biscuits actually contain the same amount of fats and sugars as regular adult biscuits.
What To Look For On Packets
So how can we choose our snacks better and what can we look for on the packets? Organix have shown us four things that we should look for when we’re picking snacks for our babies and toddlers.
- Firstly we should avoid really long ingredients lists. It is not necessary to put that many ingredients into a healthy kids snack.
- Secondly, we should be avoiding foods that have added salt, sugar or flavourings. None of these things are good for our babies and toddlers!
- Next we should avoid any unrecognisable ingredients. If you’ve never heard of it, or don’t recognise the ingredients, thats not a good thing!
- Lastly we should try and look for the organic logo. An organic logo on s pack means that your baby and toddler snacks have been made to the highest standard.
We Want To See Changes!
I don’t know about you, but after reading the contents of some of the packets, I really want certain food brands to be more clear about the contents of their snacks. Parents are so busy and are often distracted while shopping. We all too often rely on the front of the packet to tell us whether something is healthy. But, lots of brands are hiding bad and unnecessary ingredients, behind bold claims!
I also think that the food industry needs to make some serious changes. Firstly, they need to reduce the levels of salt, fat and sugar that is found in some babies and toddlers food. Why is it even there in the first place?
I also agree with Organix and 60% of the parents they surveyed, that there needs to be more regulation and that the food industry needs to take responsibility to make sure that brands are providing quality healthy snacks for little ones.
As parents, it’s our responsibility to make sure that our kids are getting the best, healthiest foods that they can be. I actually feel a little bit fooled by some brands. I’m really surprised that some products are allowed to sit in the baby and toddler food aisle.
Join Us On Our Mission To Find #FoodYouCanTrust
We’d love you to get involved and share what you find. Take a trip to the supermarket and explore what’s really in baby and toddler snacks that you normally buy.
We’d love you to take part by sharing photos of food and food labels. Or just share the snacks that are good for your little ones. The more people that are made aware of this, the better. You can join us on social media, using the hashtag #FoodYouCanTrust. We hope to see you there!
So, are you shocked by the contents of some kids snacks? Do you think the food industry needs to reduce levels of salt, fat and sugar in food that’s designed for babies and toddlers? Let me know in the comments below!