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Asda withdraws ready meals after Slimming World row

Credit: PA

Supermarket chain Asda is withdrawing a range of ready meals from stores after a disagreement with Slimming World.

Asda's range of meals called Slimzone pre-made meals were launched in January.

The dishes included ingredients which were classed as "free" - meaning you can "eat as much" of them "as you like" under the Slimming World diet plan.

The 12 meals were removed from shelves because of the method used by the weight-loss organisation to assess whether ready meals were "free" or not, a spokesman for Asda said.

The spokesman said: "Recent information has come to light indicating that the method used by Slimming World to assess whether a ready meal is free or not, surprisingly, is partly subjective and involves more than simply making food with free ingredients.

"Slimzone was always intended to bring more choice and lower prices to customers shopping for healthy frozen ready meals, but because of this new information, we have chosen to remove the range while we consider the best option for our customers."

Credit: PA

The meal packs included a statement informing customers that the range was not endorsed by Slimming World.

It is the latest twist in the ongoing disagreement between the supermarket and the weight loss company over the range of ready meals.

Last month Slimming World announced it was taking Asda to court to remove its trade mark from from their range of Slimzone meals accusing the supermarket giant of "trading on the back of our brand’s reputation".

In response to Asda announcing it is now withdrawing the Slimzone meals, Slimming World released a statement saying it hopes the supermarket can "relaunch the range without relying on Slimming World’s trademarks or name".

It read: "Asda’s decision to withdraw the meals comes just before a court hearing next week in which we were seeking an injunction over the trademark issue.

"Although we repeatedly asked Asda to give us a more detailed breakdown of the ingredients used so that we could make an accurate assessment, they would not supply those details – so we were unable to confirm whether or not the meals would be designated as Free Food on Slimming World’s healthy eating plan."

Slimming World said its concern "has been about our trademarks" and that it has never had the intention to "prevent Asda from selling healthy meals that help people lose weight".