Boston Market commits to sodium reduction

by Eric Schroeder
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GOLDEN, COLO. — Boston Market has removed all of its salt shakers from the tables inside its 476 locations and unveiled a commitment to reducing sodium levels in signature items by 20% and in the restaurant chain’s menu items by 15% by the end of 2014.

Salt shakers still will be available in the restaurants, but diners will need to pick them up at a central condiment station. In the kitchen, Boston Market said it is working with research and quality assurance teams to find ways to reduce sodium in the restaurant’s signature rotisserie chicken, mashed potatoes and mac and cheese by 20% over the next six months, without sacrificing flavor.

The effort to address sodium at Boston Market is the latest step in a series of menu modifications that began nearly two years ago. In October 2010, the company began a rollout of several enhancements, including reducing sodium in Boston Market’s signature rotisserie chicken by 20% and cutting sodium in the restaurant’s poultry gravy by 50%. Since 2011, the chain has offered guests lighter options on a menu of Meals Under 550 Calories.

“As a consumer myself, I too have seen the headlines about the impact sodium can have on our health,” said George Michel, chief executive officer of Boston Market. “By removing salt shakers from Boston Market tables, we hope to raise awareness of salt intake, without completely eliminating the option, to those who dine in our restaurants. Today, we are publicly committing to further reduce sodium from menu items while still delivering the great taste for which Boston Market is known.”

Boston Market said it will continue to explore additional sodium reductions and other nutritional improvements to soups, sandwiches and salads.

“Beyond our 2014 commitments, we recognize that the salt content of our soups and sandwiches needs attention as well,” said Sara Bittorf, chief brand officer, Boston Market. “This announcement and the announcements to follow are a promise to our guests to deliver wholesome foods they can feel good about sharing with their families.”

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