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European soft drinks producers surpass sugar reduction targets

Nov 17, 2020 (MarketLine via COMTEX) --

<p>The trade association for Europe's soft drinks manufacturers has said the industry has surpassed sugar reduction targets set by the European Commission.</p>

Citing GlobalData research, UNESDA Soft Drinks Europe said this week that Europe's soft drinks industry has reduced added sugars in its drinks by an average of 14.6% between 2015 and 2019. The EC had called for a 10% reduction by 2020, the trade group said.

"This reduction is proof that the soft drinks industry's voluntary efforts to reduce sugar across the EU are delivering tangible results," said UNESDA president Tim Brett, who is also The Coca-Cola Co's Western Europe president. "It demonstrates our sector's accelerated action in response to changing consumer preferences and the expectations of public health stakeholders."

The 14.6% reduction in added sugars has been achieved through a range of actions including changing recipes, new product development, small packs and marketing investments. According to UNESDA, the latest sugar reduction comes on top of previous achievements and means that "Europe's soft drinks industry has now reduced added sugars by an average of 26% since 2000".

UNESDA is a founding member of the EU Platform for Action on Diet, Physical Activity and Health.

"Our sector's progress in reducing sugar and calorie reduction has been enabled by the openness of stakeholders to engage through the EU Platform," concluded Tim Brett. "We believe that the EU Code of Conduct for responsible business and marketing practices announced in the EU Farm to Fork strategy offers an opportunity to continue this dialogue with all actors, including Member States. As an industry we are committed to maintaining our efforts through a range of voluntary actions to ensure that the healthier choice becomes the easy choice."

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