Maltese soft drinks industry giants GSD Marketing. Ltd and Simonds Farsons Cisk plc. may be moving us one step further away from obesity in their latest promise to make their drinks healthier. The two companies have committed to a local pledge to contribute to the delivery of a general 10% sugar reduction by 2020.
The pledge comes as a response to the European soft drink industry (UNESDA) 10% sugar reduction commitment, which in turn reflects changing consumer preferences – meaning people have wised up about their sugar intake in general. The commitment calls for EU Member States and the European Commission to combine forces to cut down on the sweet stuff.
Although cutting out sugar is not limited to sugary drinks alone alone, the soft drinks industry is the first sector to come forward with a measurable commitment in response to the 10% added sugar reduction target.
Both Maria Micallef – Chief Operating Officer at GSD Marketing. Ltd, and Norman Aquilina – Group Chief Executive Officer of Simonds Farsons Cisk plc., spoke in favour of the initiative. So we should expect to see some changes to our Coca Colas and Pepsis, amongst other sugary drinks.
The combined plan for the soft drink giants is to follow these five steps towards cutting down sugar:
Reformulating existing products including the use of low calorie sweeteners.
Innovating to introduce new products with no or reduced sugar and low calorie sweeteners.
Increasing the availability of smaller pack sizes to allow portion control and moderation.
Investing in the promotion of drinks with reduced or no sugar to educate and actively encourage consumer choice towards low and no calorie products.
Committing to monitoring the progress of added sugar reduction achieved using independent external research and to share this with stakeholders.
So this means we can look forward to lower calorie drinks, and a move towards healthier living.
Now, how to conquer our carb-addiction…
For read more information on the UNESDA sugar reduction commitment, visit their website.