US breadmakers hold crisis talks over impact of Atkins diet

  1. US breadmakers hold crisis talks over impact of Atkins diet

    <H3 class=head3>By Jeremy Laurance Health Editor</H3>

    <P class=padnone>20 November 2003 The growing craze for high protein, low carbohydrate slimming regimes such as the Atkins diet is threatening the market for one of the staple foods of the West - bread.

    Consumption of bread plummeted in America in the past year with an estimated 40 per cent of Americans eating less than in 2002. The US bread industry is to hold a crisis "bread summit" tomorrow to discuss measures to curb falling sales. In Britain, the Federation of Bakers launched a promotional campaign last month to counter the Atkins effect. British Bread month was advertised with the slogan "Use your loaf, have another slice."

    Sales of sliced and wrapped bread have been declining by 2 per cent a year for the past three years in the UK. John White, a spokesman for the federation, said: "The impact of Atkins in the US is of concern to UK businesses. Everyone seems to be on it."

    In America, Patrick Davis of the National Bread Leadership Council, which organised the summit, said that it was unclear whether the fall in bread sales was a temporary blip or indicative of a more permanent change in eating habits. The average American eats 54lbs of bread a year, barely a third of the quantity consumed by the French and Italians. But the Italians and the French are not notably obese, Mr Davis said.

    While bread sales are falling, sales of meat, eggs and fruit are rising. In Britain, consumption of beef has risen from 739,000 tons in 1997, when the Atkins diet was first published in Britain, to 990,000 tons last year.

    Although the diet has been widely condemned by doctors and nutritionists, an estimated 32 million Americans are on low carbohydrate, high protein diets according to a survey.

    The Medical Research Council (MRC) in Britain has warned that the basis of the Atkins diet is questionable and it could be dangerous. Dr Susan Jebb, head of nutrition at the MRC, said: "It is an unknown risk. The diet is nutritionally incomplete."

  2. I saw this on the news before. First the US is complaining about all the major obesity, and now they're complaining about people not eating enough carbs, junk ,etc.

  3. LOL problem is, take out about 1.5 million doing it right and you still have tens of millions of people who have switched their diet to magical "low carb" splendor, but they still have no idea how to really eat properly and nutritionally... so, people will suck either way, and the sloppy unhealthy trends will continue, bread or no.

  4. Why do people down low-carb people like they're lepers or something. I use CKD and feel 10X better than I did on a regular 40/40/20 or whatever.

  5. The demonization of the carbohydrate by our society is disgusting. Not that atkins is bad - Ill be using CKD when I cut eventually, but you have all these people walking around thinking that if they eat a ****load of bacon and hotdogs that their fat is just going to melt away. And ooooh, dont look at that bread! Its EVIL.

    Morons!! The same people who wont eat oatmeal, stuff their faces with sausages, and expect this miraculous cure to obesity when they're 'just too busy to work out'.

  6. Well look at it this way:

    Money makes the world go round

    If you disrupt one industry to a large enough scale you are effecting many people's jobs and companies' profits. I think a slow readjustment is needed, but this means the bread companies will have to search for alternative means of income, which is not the easiest thing to do. It is natural for them to try and boost sales of an already produced product, rather than reinvest in a new business strategy, so it is no shocker they are up in arms about this. What would you expect the oil industry to do if all of a sudden everyone started using electric powered cars?? Change takes time

  7. Originally posted by jweave23
    What would you expect the oil industry to do if all of a sudden everyone started using electric powered cars??
    We're (oil industry) trying to be a little more forward thinking than being surprised by the development of alternative fuels or more efficient propulsion sources (hybrids, fuel cells, etc.). We've invested in research for both.

    Maybe the bread industry should be investing in protein since people on Atkins and other knockoffs are increasing protein consumption while they are decreasing carb consumption.



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