Food Drink Ireland (FDI), the Ibec group the represents the food and drink industries, has launched a new report that shows the decreases in sugar and saturated fat in Irish diets.
The report, entitled 'The Evolution of Food and Drink in Ireland, 2005 – 2017', found that sugar levels in Irish diets have fallen between 2005 and 2017 as a result of voluntary undertakings by food and drink companies.
It was launched by Danny McCoy, CEO of Ibec, Linda Stuart-Trainor, Director of Prepared Consumer Foods in FDI and Dr Pamela Byrne, CEO of the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI).
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“Food and drink companies are constantly innovating in response to changing consumer lifestyles, tastes and demands,” Stuart-Trainor said.
“This report makes a major contribution to the store of public knowledge on intakes of sugar, salt, saturated fat, total fat and energy.
“It analyses how reformulation and new product development by the food and drink industry interacts with consumer choices to impact on the nutrient intakes of adults, teenagers, children and pre-schoolers.”
Between 2005 and 2017, the average sugar intake of a child has been reduced by 3.2 grams per day, with an adult’s average intake has dropped by 0.8g/day.
This has been driven by a series of product reformulations which have seen the sugar levels in products reduced by 8%.
According to FDI, Ireland has established itself as an international leader in the investigation of food and drink industry reformulation efforts.
“This report demonstrates the food and beverage industry’s ongoing commitment to the societal effort to tackle obesity and improve public health,” Stuart-Trainor agreed.
“Reformulation is a lengthy and complex journey; each step in the right direction counts. For many products, changes must be gradual in order to ensure consumer acceptance and lock in the health benefits.”
15 FDI member companies provided data for the research, including the likes of Britvic, Coca-Cola Ireland, Glanbia, Largo Foods, Mars, Nestlé, PepsiCo and Unilever.
© 2019 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Aidan O’Sullivan. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.