UK’s largest supermarket chain Tesco has announced that it would reduce sugar, fat and salt content in its private label brands as a part of Tesco’s ongoing commitment to provide its customers with healthier choices. The grocer would reportedly cut sugar levels by great extend in own brand soft drinks including Tesco Cola.
Health advocates have long been demanding trimming down sugar content in soft drinks as sugars should make up no more than 5 per cent of people’s daily diet. With the current move Tesco has passed up government’s sugar tax levy by keeping the sugar content in own label soft drinks below 5 grams per 100 ml.
Matt Davies, Tesco UK and ROI CEO said: “This is just one part of our plans to make the food on our shelves healthier by reducing levels of sugar, salt and fat in our own brands. “We have worked to make sure our soft drinks still taste great, just with less sugar. Tesco customers are now consuming on average over 20 per cent less sugar from our soft drinks than in 2011. We’re hoping this initiative will help make it a little easier for our customers to live more healthily.”
Chris Askew, Diabetes UK CEO welcomed the move, saying: “Helping customers lead healthier lives by reducing sugar in its own brand soft drinks is a welcome move by Tesco. Similar action from other manufacturers and retailers to make products lower in sugar, saturated fat and salt is vital to tackle rising rates of obesity in the UK. Making the healthy choice the easy choice for all of us will help to tackle the rapidly rising number of people developing Type 2 diabetes.”
Tesco first started its campaign against sugar in 2011, with reducing sugar levels in its soft drinks. Today the supermarket has around 50 products with sugar content below 5 grams per 100 ml. Tesco has also cut the salt, fat and sugar in over 4,200 of its own products since 2012 and has plans for reductions in a further 1,000 products each year for the next three years.