Sugar

Frequent and excessive sugar consumption causes dental caries, hampers weight management and may result in overweight and obesity. Overweight and obesity will increase the risk of such diseases as type 2 diabetes.

 

Contents

Eating foods containing less sugar will be made easy for consumers.

Operators are encouraged to offer products that help consumers to achieve the sugar intake recommendations and to observe the nutritional quality criteria for sugar in their purchases.

Sugar contents are gradually reduced so that the population-level sugar intake recommendations can be achieved in the long term. This will have an impact on sugar intake and the liking for sugar. Reducing the amount of added sugars should result in a lower energy content. The energy content may, however, remain unchanged provided that the nutritional quality is improved at the same time (for example, fibre content is increased). The content of saturated fats, trans fats or salt may not increase. (EU Annex II)

 

Targets

Added sugars accounts for less than 10 per cent of the energy intake in the diet.

    • The following sugars are added sugars: sucrose, fructose, glucose, starch-containing sweeteners (glucose syrup and glucose-fructose syrups) and other similar sugar products (including honey, juice concentrates, syrups and sweetener syrups) that are used as such or added to foods during the production process to sweeten them.
  • The availability of products containing added sugars will be restricted/reduced (snacks/beverages).
  • In product groups central to sugar intake, sugar contents will be reduced by 10 per cent by the year 2020, from 2015 levels (EU, Annex II, Added sugars)

The long-term objective is to ensure that the sugar content in the products that are central to sugar intake is in accordance with the Better Choice Heart Symbol criteria.

  

Priorities

In their measures concerning sugar, operators should give priority to the following food groups central to sugar intake:

  • Soft drinks and juice drinks containing added sugar
  • Dairy products and products used as dairy products containing added sugar
  • Bakery products and breakfast cereals
  • Berry and fruit foods containing added sugar

 

We are introducing the following measures to reduce sugar content in meals and food products

  • We are continuously increasing the proportion of products meeting the Better Choice Heart Symbol sugar criteria. See also: https://www.sydanmerkki.fi/en/criteria
  • We are continuously reducing the content of added sugar and increasing the proportion of sugar-free products.
  • The content of added sugar will be reduced, especially in products used frequently, in large amounts, and on a regular basis (daily), such as sugar-containing beverages, breakfast products, snacks and bakery products.
  • We will use tooth-friendly sweeteners (such as xylitol) in sweets.

 

Examples of commitments

Example 1: A total of 60 per cent of our yogurts and quark snacks will meet the Better Choice Heart Symbol sugar criteria by the year 2020.

Example 2: We will reduce the content of added sugar by 10 per cent in our breakfast products by the year 2020.

Example 3: In 2020, our beverages will have 8 per cent less added sugar than in 2015.

Example 4: A total of 80 per cent of our soft drinks will be unsweetened waters or artificially sweetened options by the end of 2019.

Example 5: Our eight top-selling mueslis and cereals will meet the Better Choice Heart Symbol sugar criteria by the year 2020.

Example 6: The number of xylitol-sweetened sweets in our range will increase by 25 per cent by the year 2020.

Example 7: Sweet and soft drink vending machines will be removed from all schools in our municipality in 2018.

Example 8: A total of 10 per cent of our bakery products will meet the Better Choice Heart Symbol sugar criteria by the year 2020.