Thursday, 5 August 2010

Sugar content will remain high in Coco Pops, despite moves to make the cereal healthier

I doubt you’re really wondering about the sugar or salt content of your breakfast cereal as you sleepily tip it into the bowl first thing in the morning.

But yesterday Kellogg’s announced they intend to reduce the amount of sugar in Coco Pops by 15 per cent, saying they had “listened to mums”.

While we think the move by Kellogg’s is definitely a step in the right direction, Coco Pops and lots of other breakfast cereals on supermarket shelves will still be high in sugar, even after the reduction.

It may be hard to spot this though, because the information on food packaging can be so confusing. We don’t have a standard labelling system in the UK so we’re left comparing a confusing multitude of different figures and symbols to try and work out what’s really in the food we’re about to buy.

What we need is a clear and simple food labelling scheme that we can all understand. A system including traffic light colours on the front of packaging has been proven to give families the most helpful information to make at a glance decisions about what’s really in the food they buy.

Food companies have been extremely reluctant to consider traffic light labels, which makes us wonder what have they got to hide?

By Beatrice Brooke, policy manager for the BHF

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