Elizabeth Jones is the founder of Winchester based family food company On the Menu that makes Real Good Ketchup, www.realgoodketchup.com. Here she tells us why she started her company and offers 5 lucky winners a free sample.
Why was Real Good Ketchup created?
Our Winchester business, On the Menu has always been in foods for special dietary needs. Real Good Ketchup was created both with diabetics and Mums in mind for children. My son has complex food allergies and as a small child was intolerant of sugar along with many other foods, so I personally understand the importance of quality, safe, free from foods and the negative impact of sugar. Subsequently, as a young adult, my son has no fillings or signs of tooth decay, so we know first-hand that not adding free sugar to children’s food makes a significant difference to dental health later in life. Having been raised on sherbert sweets, I cannot say that for myself!
When I looked on shelf a couple of years ago, I could not find suitable ketchup so we decided to create a real good one ourselves.
What have you found hardest about reducing the sugar in your diet?
Watching snacks and food on the go do not have added sugars.
Understanding that carbs convert into sugar in the body was my wake up call, I cut out pasta, bread and cakes fairly quickly and increased fruit in my diet instead. I have never taken sugar in tea or hot drinks, so free sugar was also easy to remove. I love potatoes and dried fruit, both of which ultimately convert into sugars. I don’t have a solution for these yet although I am working on it!
Why are you supporting Sugar Swap September?
As a free from health and wellness food business, it’s important that we support all initiatives to reduce sugar where we can. Nothing to be lost trying some new food products from brands that have worked hard to reduce or cut out added sugars altogether. We all need to make a start, however small, to cut back on the amount of hidden sugars we eat and help to make low sugar foods part of our diet.
We are supporting Sugar Swap September and encouraging folks to try our own Real Good Ketchup along with other innovative and healthy foods. Looking for the Sugarwise mark is a good starting point.
Do you have any tips to help those reducing their sugar intake during the campaign?
Baby steps! It’s much easier to cut out one sugary food per week, get used to it, feel the achievement and keep the momentum going to the next week. Giving taste buds a chance to taste natural sugars in fruit. I have copied a friend in Australia who cooks a medley of fruits in coconut oil, adds cinnamon and tops with plain yoghurt or cream. It’s absolutely delicious, can also be frozen and is only sugars from fruit. I have been known to melt 90% dark chocolate and drizzle over the top for a complete indulgence, without adding any sugar. Truly divine.
What makes Real Good Ketchup a better option than other leading brands?
We are super proud to be the only approved no added sugar ketchup on the market and are 50% less sugar on our label than the leading brand’s reduced sugar option in supermarkets. Real Good Ketchup is also 78% less salt than other ketchups, is completely allergen free, vegan and tastes delicious! This year we have won two Free From Food Awards (one Gold in Ireland) and are Sugarwise certified Free From Added Sugar - we think it doesn’t get much better than that !