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Tesco reduces sugar content in all own brand soft drinks

Less than a teaspoon of sugar per 100 millilitres is the new standard introduced by Tesco in own brand soft drinks. The company reduces sugar content to help shoppers make healthier choices.

Tesco reviewed 120 of its soft drinks and improved the formulas of 42. All products were tested by customers, to make sure that the change in sugar content does not change the taste of the products.

“We have worked to make sure our soft drinks still taste great, just with less sugar. We’re hoping this initiative will help make it a little easier for our customers to live more healthily” – said Jamie Walker, Tesco Product Director Central Europe.

According to World Health Organisation’s guidelines*, it is recommended for adults and children to reduce daily intake of free sugars to less than 10% of total energy intake. The work on reducing sugar means that over the year customers in Central Europe will consume… 4,100 tonnes less sugar!

Reducing sugar translates into less calories we consume. For example, a Tesco Cola with less than 5 grams sugar added provides about than 22 calories per 100 ml. Similar product of the most popular brands will at the same time give us more than 40 calories per 100 ml. On average, new Tesco products provide 24% less calories.

“Carbohydrates, including sugars, are an important source of calories in many consumers’ diet. Excessive caloric intake from all sources, not just sugar, combined with low energy expenditure, is associated with an increased risk of obesity that increases the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Reducing sugar content in drinks is one of the important steps to improve the energy balance of your daily diet”, says Jadwiga Przybyłowska, diet and nutrition expert. “The food industry has an important role to play in promoting a healthier lifestyle and a more balanced diet, including reading product labels, so consumers are more consciously choosing the foods they eat every day”, she adds.

Tesco’s improved soft drinks offer have been gradually introduced over the last few months, with the final products landing on shelves by mid-September. Now, all Tesco soft drinks comply with the “less than 5 grams” rule.

* http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2015/sugar-guideline/en/