Sunday, April 4, 2010

2012 : zero trans fat

Headed by Prime Minister Chung Un-chan, Korea's food safety policy committee recently decided to ban trans fat from all processed foods by 2012. 93% of such products are already exempt in a country where the labelling system provides good transparency on this issue, except maybe for a few indirectly imported goods.

Korea is ahead of most Asian countries (not to mention places like France) in the worldwide crusade against trans fats, a source of with many health hazards, most notably coronary heart disease.

Note that Korea has also made noticeable progresses in other fields, cutting down for instance the level of salt in instant noodles or stews. Improving standards for processed foods is a necessity : you wouldn't find anything beyond ramyeon two decades ago and now, an incredible variety of dishes is available, and all major retailers keep launching new products every month to follow societal trends.

The most spectacular innovations in merchandizing can be seen in SSMs / Super-SuperMarkets : led by hypermarket leaders (E-Mart Everyday, HomePlus Express...), this booming segment of distribution that all but killed small retailers developed large sections obviously targeting urban singles and DINKs who can afford diverse and complex meals, but not the time to cook them.

Over the past two decades, Korea experienced a change that took twice as much time in Western Europe, and it spectacularly impacted the morphology of people on the street : back then, you would hardly see an overweight person or someone taller than 1.8 m. The backlash is also happening more quickly : the traditionally balanced diet is being reconsidered as not so corny and speaking of cereals, even the dreaded rice-barley mix of yore, imposed in times of shortages, is back with a vengeance... also in the instant rice version.

Seoul Village 2010

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for your comments and remarks. Also for your patience (comments are moderated and are not published right away - only way to curb the spam, sorry). S.

books, movies, music