Thursday, June 7, 2012

Canned Foods: Nutritional, Economical and Recyclable

Canned foods are less expensive than their fresh, frozen and dried counterparts and can offer a more convenient way to get much-needed nutrients according to a new study published in the Journal for Nutrition and Food Sciences. Commissioned by the Canned Food Alliance (CFA), the study showed that canned fruits, vegetables, beans and seafood offer a cost-effective way to obtain several key nutrients.

The inclusion of all forms of fruits and vegetables, whether they are canned, fresh, frozen or dried, has several health benefits such as reducing the risk of several chronic diseases, including obesity, diabetes and heart disease. The CFA continues to communicate the many benefits of canned food and dispel myths about canned food to encourage consumers to eat all forms of fruits, vegetables, beans and seafood.

The CFA study analyzed the cost per nutrient for canned, fresh, frozen and/or dried forms of common fruits, vegetables, beans and tuna. It concluded when price, waste and preparation time were considered, canned foods offered many nutrients at a comparable and often lower price. Studies, such as this, shatter the myths about canned food’s lack of maintaining nutrients and reinforce the truth behind eating healthy while still saving time and money for households.

Beyond the nutrition, affordability and convenience benefits identified through the study on canned foods, the recyclability of the container should be taken into consideration as well. The full life cycle of the package plays a role in overall environmental health by conserving energy and reducing unnecessary disposal of valuable materials in limited landfill space. Steel packaging is recycled in excess of 67% annually which sets it ahead of other packaging materials such as plastic and glass.

Americans use over 100 million steel cans a day comprised of more than 1,500 food products that come in steel cans, many of which are fruits and vegetables. These canned items have a longer shelf life than other packaging options and reduce the risk of food borne illness.

The ease of recycling steel cans mirrors the ease in preparation of your meal. More than 31,000 community recycling programs accept steel cans, whether it is a local drop-off or your weekly curbside pickup. Families can look up their nearest recycling options with the Steel Recycling Locator.

Across the board, steel packaging not only meets, but exceeds competing materials in providing access to affordable nutrition, while also achieving environmental benefits.

For more information on the Canned Food Alliance, visit

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