New Co-op Food ‘sugar swap’ pledges

January 5, 2015 by The Co-operative Food sugar-swaps

The Co-operative Food will boost shelf space for healthier drinks as part of its support for the Department of Health’s Change4life ‘Sugar Swaps’ campaign. The initiative aims to encourage shoppers to switch to ‘no added sugar’ or ‘sugar free’ drinks, to improve their health.

  • The move by The Co-op will see it provide 25% more space on shelves to drinks which are sugar free or have low or no added sugar as part of a five-point action plan it is implementing to provide consumers with healthier choices. The Co-operative Food has removed almost 100 million teaspoons of sugar from its shelves, helping to cut 1.5 billion calories. New commitments from the retailer include: By early 2015, healthier soft drinks will have 25% more shelf space in stores
  • The creation of a new “health and well-being” range of soft drinks, using only natural ingredients and sweeteners, will also be introduced by the end 2015.

While it has already:

  • Changed the entire range of The Co-operative Brand Dilutable Drinks to contain no added sugar (first in the market)
  • Over 90% of all The Co-operative own brand soft drinks (squash, fruit juice, carbonated drinks and water) is either sugar free, No Added Sugar or low in sugar:
  • Removed added sugar from the own-brand High Juice Squash range, reducing the amount of sugar in the range by 90%.

Cathryn Higgs, Food Policy Manager, The Co-operative Food said: “The change4life Sugar Swaps campaign enables us to highlight the importance of sugar awareness in drinks. We were the first retailer to put a Sugar advisory note on the label of our own brand sugar sweetened soft drinks, fruit juices and smoothies and the new no added sugar range, along with the 5 point pledge are just more examples of The Co-operative’s commitment to helping our customers to be sugar aware”

The Co-operative was one of the first retailers to sign up to the Government’s ‘Public Health Responsibility Deal’ (PHRD) and actively make changes to its range and shelf displays to achieve the Government’s Calorie Reduction targets.

Jane Ellison MP, Department of Health Minister said: “As a nation we are consuming too many calories, and sugar plays a substantial role in this. That’s why I am delighted that the Co-op re-formulated its entire Squash range to ensure the range contains ‘no added sugar’.  The Co-op is one of a number of retailers and manufacturers leading the way in reducing the sugar content, and calories more generally, of their products where possible. I urge all others to consider what more they can do.”

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