Excessive salt intake is harmful to your health. In Portugal, the government has already put in place plans to limit the amount of salt in main foodstuffs, especially bread. This is through a series of new laws that will see the amount of salt in 100g bread drop to less than 1.3g in January 2019, 1.2g in 2020, 1.1g in 2021, and 1.0g in 2022. As part of the National Health Plan, this new capping is aimed at lowering the salt intake of the Portuguese by 10%.
There had been significant concern regarding the amount of salt the average Portuguese, and also tourists were ingesting. This is because most Portuguese dishes require much of the additive. Also, bread and toast were food that almost everyone ate on a daily basis, and they have lots of salt.
Research shows that excessive salt intake is the root of a significant number of chronic diseases, such as heart complications, among others. To worsen the situation, the average person was consuming 7.3g of salt daily, which is half as much as what the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends.
It is important to note that the law will apply to all types of bread, whether produced locally or not. As long as the bread is sold in Portugal, it should adhere to the set standards. The only exception to this law is meat-based bread, which can have the right amount of salt to taste.
The new law on bread salt is not the only effort the government is making to fight the rising lifestyle diseases caused by the rather unhealthy Portuguese cuisine. Just recently, the government also passed a law that increased the tax on salty snacks to at least discourage the massive intake of them. So, if you find your bread tasting differently, it’s the new law in effect.