Is some supermarket infant food older than the baby you are buying it for?

According to author Annabel Karmel MBE, many babies are being fed food that is actually older than them. Ms Karmel is the author of the best selling book in the UK ‘The Complete Baby and Toddler Meal planner’, which is now on its 20th Edition. She is campaigning keenly for supermarkets to add fridges into their baby aisles so that parents have the choice of buying fresh, chilled products for their children.

If you go into any baby aisle at the moment, you are faced with a great array of long life foods in packets or jars. The author says that to get the long shelf life, the baby foods are prepared at exceedingly high temperatures, which destroys some of the vital nutrients. Apart from this it leaves the food tasting either bland or downright horrible, particularly the savoury foods.

She believes that natural tastes are vital when weaning a child, and they need to experience new tastes and develop their taste buds.

“Between six months and a year of age babies are very open to trying new flavours. It’s an important time to develop their tastes and habits by trying new foods, to avoid them becoming fussy eaters,” she says.

Her aim is to change the way babies are fed and get supermarkets to put chiller cabinets in the baby aisles: “It is one of the last sections of the supermarket that does not have fresh, chilled food. We want to eat ‘real’ food, but are content to give our babies bland, over-processed meals.”

As a step further in her aim of providing babies and busy mums and dads with the option of fresh, ready-prepared meals Annabel has just launched a range of tasty organic chilled pureed combinations, steam-cooked to lock in goodness and as flavoursome as if home-made.  The range, is available in Sainsburys supermarkets, where they are stored in the chilled food section, failing the availability of fridge facilities in the baby aisle. Affordable at £2.69 for a pack of 2 x 100g re-sealable pots, there is a butternut squash and salmon puree, beef casserole with sweet root vegetables, and potato with sweet potato and spinach.

“Babies grow more rapidly in the first year than they do the rest of their life. They deserve the best balanced nutrition we can give them, not to mention the pleasure of full food flavours to set them on course to appreciating and enjoying good food forever.