Coles has revealed the secret to the success of its store-made bread that customers have been enjoying from the bakery since February, removing 76 tonnes of salt from its bread.
The Coles bakery team spent two years improving the recipes of its white loaves and rolls, reducing the salt content by up to 25 per cent, while working with an Australian flour miller on a new recipe to help keep the soft bread varieties softer for longer once customers take them home.
As part of Coles’ purpose to sustainably feed all Australians to help them lead healthier, happier lives, the new recipes have resulted in more than 76 tonnes of salt being removed from 46 Coles in-store bakery products every year—the equivalent of two semi-trailer loads.
Some of the most popular breads, like the in-store baked Coles White Sandwich, Toast and Block Loaves, now contain as little as 274mg of sodium per 100g, compared to 375mg per 100g in the old recipe.
The final stage of the two-year journey to improve in-store bakery bread involved Coles partnering with Australian family-owned business, Manildra Group from regional New South Wales, to produce a flour recipe for the soft bread varieties that not only contained less sodium, but were softer for longer too.
Coles General Manager for Bakery Andy Mossop said the Coles Bakery and technical teams had worked closely with Manildra to provide affordable, healthier bread options for customers.
“In our mission to be Australia’s most sustainable supermarket, we have been gradually reducing sodium from in-store bakery bread rolls and loaves over the past two years without compromising on taste, quality or shelf life—our aim was to make the change without customers even noticing, and they haven’t,” he said.
“Bread is a household staple and we sell more than 400 million Coles Bakery loaves and rolls from the in-store bakery each year. We’ve worked hard to create a new recipe which allows us to reduce sodium by up to 25 per cent while also maintaining great quality, value and taste because we know how important softness and flavour is to our customers. This has been a very considered and tested process to ensure we are providing the very best bread our customers will enjoy every day.”
Manildra Group Director John Honan said the company was proud to partner with Coles to produce a healthier and softer bread recipe for Australians to enjoy.
“Premium-quality food has been at the heart of our business for nearly seven decades and we’re excited to partner with Coles supermarkets to supply high-quality bread—all proudly produced by our family-owned Australian company for Coles customers from Cairns to Hobart to Perth, and everywhere in between,” John said.
“Our high-quality white bread mix uses 100 per cent Australian wheat and is lower in salt. This product has been specially created using the highest quality ingredients to manufacture bread products that arguably provide market leading crumb softness, texture and eating qualities in the Coles Super Soft, Crusty and Savoury range.”
Heart Foundation Group CEO, Adjunct Professor John Kelly, welcomed Coles’ bakery reformulation initiative as a step in the right direction to reduce hidden salt in foods that many Australians regularly consume.
“More than 6.2 million Australians live with high blood pressure, which puts them at higher risk of a heart attack or stroke. High blood pressure is known as a silent killer as its symptoms are often not noticeable until people have it checked by their doctor,” Professor Kelly said.
“Currently, Australians eat double the recommended maximum of 5 grams of salt or around a teaspoon per day. Reducing salt levels in some of our everyday foods can help improve people’s health.
“As well as reducing salt in our diets, good nutrition relies on boosting protective foods like heart-healthy vegetables, fruits and wholegrains and eating them regularly.”
Coles’ new-recipe bread loaves and rolls are available at Coles supermarkets from the in-store bakery nationally.