28 April, 2016


Responding to the release of the Added Sugars Report from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), Australian Beverages Council CEO, Geoff Parker said;

“With respect to the contribution of added sugars from drinks, it’s important to consider the way Australians are consuming beverages has been changing for over a decade. Today, soft drinks contribute just 1.7 per cent of the daily intake of kilojoules for Australian adults, and when it comes to discretionary foods, they rank seventh in kilojoule contribution at 4 per cent.1

“Between 1995 and 2011, ABS data highlights that consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages decreased by 9 per cent. Across the same 15-year period, we have seen a 26 per cent decline in sugar contribution per person from soft drinks.2

“As a nation, we have been drinking fewer kilojoules from soft drinks over the last decade. The consumption of low-kilojoule varieties increased by 2 percent nationally and today, nearly one in two drinks consumed is of a non-sugar variety (42 per cent volume share in 2011) compared to 30 per cent in 1997).3

“Teenage boys are the biggest overall consumers, however we also know these habits don’t last a lifetime as the contribution of sugar sweetened beverages to total energy intake peaks at 14 to 18, before declining through adulthood.

As a society, the focus should be placed on reducing the intake of all discretionary foods and drinks, including alcohol, and increasing core food intake like fruit and vegetables, in order to get the balance back into Australian diets. This will not only reduce the intake of all added sugars, but saturated fats, salt and most importantly, total kilojoules, which is where the real solution lies” said Mr Parker.

Geoff Parker

Chief Executive Officer

Australian Beverages Council

1 Secondary analysis of non-alcoholic beverage consumption from the Australian National Health Survey, commissioned by the Australian Beverages Council and undertaken by the CSIRO
2 Australian Bureau of Statistics. Consumption of Sweetened Beverages [Internet]. 4364.0.55.007 Australian Health Survey: Nutrition First Results – Foods and Nutrients, 2011-12. Commonwealth of Australia; 2015 [cited 2016 Apr 11]. Available from http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf Lookup/4364.0.55.007main+features7102011-12
3Levy G.S., Shrapnel W.S. (2014) Quenching Australia’s thirst: a trend analysis of water-based beverage sales from 1997 to 2011. Nutrition & Dietetics. doi: 10.1111/1747-0080.12108

280416 – ABCL Response to ABS Data Release 

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