Heart Foundation Tick

Heart Foundation Tick

It’s easier to make healthier food choices with the Tick

When you’re in the supermarket aisle comparing similar products, how do you know which is the healthier choice? That’s where the Tick can help.

Tick works with food manufacturers to make foods healthier. This means you don’t have to be a nutrition expert or spend hours reading labels – just look out for the Tick, and keep making healthier choices part of your life.

Using the Tick

The Tick isn’t a diet. It’s a standard, designed to help you compare similar foods and choose the healthier option. So when you want to eat the foods you love, you can make a healthier choice.

Tick helps you compare foods and identify the varieties that:

  • are lower in saturated fat, trans fat, salt, and kilojoules
  • contain ingredients and nutrients that are better for you, like fibre, calcium, wholegrains and vegetables.

With around 2,000 different Tick products to choose from across 80 food categories, you’ll find Tick choices in most of the foods you usually buy.

Tick can be used alongside healthy eating guidelines.  Always discuss what’s right for you with your doctor or health practitioner, especially if you have a heart condition. Read more about healthy weight, and healthy eating.

Keep in mind that while a product may have the Tick, it may be something you will want to eat occasionally.

All fresh fruit and vegetables are eligible for the Tick even though they might not carry the Tick logo on packaging. Along with eggs, plain nuts and seeds, bread, reduced fat milk, lean meat, chicken and fish, they’re the basis of a healthy, balanced diet.

How the Tick works

Foods have to earn the Tick

To be eligible for the Tick, a food has to meet strict requirements.
We set nutrient and ingredient standards, and encourage manufacturers to meet these by creating or changing their product recipes.

If a food has met these standards, the manufacturer can apply to carry the Tick. Foods are independently tested and if a product fails to meet the standards, it will not enter the Tick Program.

Once a product has the Tick, it can be randomly tested at any time to ensure it keeps meeting our standards.

Tick is subject to ACCC requirements

The Tick logo is a certification trade mark. This means it has to be managed in line with Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) requirements, about things like how we set our standards and how we decide if a product meets them. For more information visit the ACCC website.

Do food companies buy the Tick?

The Tick is earned, never bought. Foods are independently tested and if a product fails to meet the standards, it will not enter the Tick Program.

Food companies do pay a licence fee once they are approved to enter the program. The fees fund the team who develop the standards, as well as nutrition research conducted by the Heart Foundation. We’re a charity and not government funded. The Tick Program runs on a cost-recovery basis.

Review of the Tick

Twenty-five years on from its introduction, and ahead of the roll out of the Health Star Rating system, it’s the ideal time to look at the future role of this pioneering public health initiative.

The Tick Program was established when there was little shopper information on the contents of packaged foods and our program has ensured Australians are able to make healthier food choices for over 25 years. We believe the need for food labelling system is as acute now as it ever was, but the health environment has changed yet again and it has been timely to examine where we go from here. The National Board of the Heart Foundation is considering advice on the future of the Tick Program with a decision to be announced in December 2015.

Tick achievements

The Tick has helped Australians make healthier food choices for more than 25 years. See what the Tick has achieved in that time.

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Tick information for food manufacturers

All you need to know about Tick criteria and how to apply for the Tick

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