Healthier food app gains international recognition

One of Australia’s top health apps, FoodSwitch, has just been awarded “Most Valuable HCP or Health Care Initiative Award” at a conference in Spain, because of its ability to empower shoppers to make healthier food choices.

Eyeforpharma is an international conference that targets sales and marketing executives from pharmaceutical organizations. Other nominations in this category were ASD Healthcare, Boehringer Ingelheim, Eli Lilly, Sanofi, and Angelini.

The George Institute was the only nominee that does not market pharmaceutical products, highlighting the impact TGI is capable of making, often with relatively modest resources. Foodswitch is just one of many high impact projects from The George Institute.

This award recognizes the value that FoodSwitch has brought to more than half a million people who have now downloaded this app. FoodSwitch has plans to extend to China, India and North America. This will make FoodSwitch a truly global app with far reaching impact on the world’s food shopping choices.

Senior Director at The George Institute for Global Health, Professor Bruce Neal, who led the development of FoodSwitch, says: “Poor diet is now the number one cause of ill health in the world. Packaged foods can be a big problem for people trying to manage health problems like hypertension or diabetes because it’s very hard to tell what’s in a product."

“FoodSwitch lets people evaluate foods instantaneously and suggests the best option for them. There’s a real opportunity for people to use FoodSwitch alongside their drug therapy. The goal is to make the accompanying dietary change easy – too often patients want to do the right thing but can’t figure out what they should and should not be picking off the supermarket shelf,’’ said Professor Neal.

“I’m really pleased to see FoodSwitch take home an award at this Pharma event. It highlights the increasing importance that Pharma attaches to supporting patients in the holistic management of their disease. I’d be keen to work with Pharma to have FoodSwitch systematically incorporated into disease management programs."

FoodSwitch is currently available in Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. The application allows users to scan the barcode of more than 200,000 packaged food and drink products and receive immediate, easy to understand ‘traffic light’ colour- coded nutritional information along with suggested similar, healthier products. It is now easier than ever for consumers to reduce high levels of fat, salt and sugar in their family’s diet.