Malta’s soft drinks bottlers reduce sugar by 10%

Malta Beverage Producers Association are among European soft drinks producers to reduce sugar content by 10%

The manufacturers of Coca-Cola and PepsiCo in Malta have announced have achieved the EU Soft Drinks Associations’ pledge to reduce the sugar content in their portfolio by 10% by 2020.

The reduction was achieved by reformulating existing products with low-calorie sweeteners, new products with no or reduced sugar, smaller pack sizes that allow portion control and moderation, promoting reduced and no-sugar products to guide consumer choice.

The pledge was made in 2017 by Coca-Cola bottlers GSD Marketing and PepsiCo bottlers Simonds Farsons Cisk.

“We agree that the consumption of too much sugar isn’t good for anyone and want to enable our consumers to better control their intake of added sugar from our beverages,” said GSD Marketing CEO Maria Micallef.

“Our combined efforts clearly demonstrate our commitment to action, and I firmly believe that it is now time to achieve critical mass across the entire food and drink chain to deliver positive health outcomes more broadly. We will continue to work with industry peers to drive meaningful initiatives and make the healthier choice the easy choice.”

Simons Farsons Cisk CEO Norman Aquilina said the UNESDA pledge had been promptly embraced by the Malta companies. “We are fully committed to promoting and encouraging ‘better for you’ choices, and as a company, we are dedicated to addressing excessive sugar consumption through the reformulation of existing products as well as through the promotion of smaller pack sizes and no or lower sugar variants.”

Both companies said they were determined to contribute to healthier and balanced diets in Malta, especially at a time of evolving consumer preferences and increasing public health expectations.

“This achievement represents the industry’s contribution to making the healthier choice become the easy choice. These Maltese soft drinks producers continue to respond to consumer changing trends and expectations while also playing an important role in supporting wellbeing, as set out by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 3.4,” the companies said.