Panera Bread has announced it has voluntarily removed trans
fat from its menu. Panera Bread bakery-cafes will roll out the reformulated
products by the end of February 2006. All Panera Bread menu items will be
free of trans fat, with the exception of small amounts that occur naturally in
dairy products, meat products and some condiments.

“Panera recognized that trans fat was a growing concern to our customers
and the medical community, therefore we made it a priority to eliminate it
from our menu,” said Tom Gumpel, Director of Bakery Development for Panera
Bread. “The most important aspect of this year-long process was upholding our
high standards for flavor. The majority of Panera’s work was focused on our
bakery goods, which had the most trans fat. We are proud to say that the
reformulated products achieve the same level of quality and great taste that
our customers expect from us.”

Recognizing the health risks associated with trans fat, Panera Bread
partnered with Saint Louis University’s Department of Nutrition and Dietetics
in early 2005 to analyze the nutritional content of Panera menu items and
identify where trans fat existed. Panera Bread worked with suppliers to
reformulate those menu offerings to use trans-free alternatives including
butter, palm oil and vegetable-based oils that maintain the flavor and texture
of Panera’s high-quality offerings.

“The negative health implications surrounding trans fat are critical for
the average consumer to understand,” said Kathy Kress, M.S.,R.D. of Saint
Louis University’s Department of Nutrition and Dietetics. “By taking
proactive measures to remove trans fat from their menu offerings, companies
like Panera Bread are creating healthier alternatives for eating outside of
the home. More importantly, they’re encouraging consumers to take a closer
look at what they’re eating.”

News, Sandwiches, Panera Bread