The Australian Beverages Council Limited (ABCL) has announced a pledge that will see the non-alcoholic beverage industry commit to a 20 per cent reduction in sugar across the industry’s portfolio by 2025.
Australia’s leading beverage companies including Coca-Cola South Pacific, Coca-Cola Amatil, PepsiCo, Asahi Beverages and Frucor Suntory have committed to the pledge with more Members of the ABCL expected to join in the coming months.
The pledge will see a reduction in sugar across the industry by 10 per cent on average by 2020, with a further commitment to reduce sugar by a total of 20 per cent on average over the full period of the pledge by 2025, and will be achieved by average reductions in total grams of sugar per 100mL.
All products represented by the ABCL Members who sign the pledge, are included in the commitment, with the reduction in total sugar measured across all Members party to the pledge.
The commitment applies to all categories of non-alcoholic drinks represented by Members of the Australian Beverages Council who have signed the pledge, including: carbonated soft drinks, energy drinks, sports and electrolyte drinks, frozen drinks, bottled and packaged waters, juice and fruit drinks, cordials, iced teas, ready-to-drink coffees, flavoured milk products and flavoured plant milks.
Total sugar is quantified by aggregated sales weighted volume data across all ABCL Members who sign the pledge and will be assessed from 1 January 2016.
Australia’s leading beverage companies have each committed to
reducing sugar by 20% by 2025
The commitments in the Pledge are based on annual sales data as of 1 January 2016 and will be achieved via average reductions of total grams of sugar per 100mL across the industry commensurate with FSANZ labelling requirements.
 Means companies party to the commitment.
 Goal to be achieved being 10% by end of 2020, and an additional 10% by end of 2025 i.e. 20% by 2025.
 All industry products represented by the Australian Beverages Council are included within this Commitment, with any reduction in sugar measured as a reduction in total sugars. Products included are all non-alcoholic carbonated soft drinks, energy drinks, sports and electrolyte drinks, frozen drinks, bottled and packaged waters, juice and fruit drinks, cordials, iced teas, ready-to-drink coffees, flavoured milk products and flavoured plant milks.
How will the industry achieve this?
Some of the instruments Members party to the Pledge may contribute to the reductions targets could include:
- Increasing the volume sales of low and no sugar varieties; and/or
- Introducing additional low and no sugar varieties into the market by 2020 and 2025; and/or
- Encouraging sales through the promotion and marketing of low or no sugar varieties; and/or
- Introducing smaller pack sizes or reducing average container sizes; and/or
- Investing in improved nutritional literacy; and/or
- Promoting the consumption of bottled water by young Australians and only milk and water for the very young; and/or
- A cap in sugar content on all existing drinks brands; and/or
- A cap in sugar on new recipes launched in Australia; and/or
- Reformulating existing products; and/or
- Where practical, transition vending machines to include more, low or no sugar varieties.
An independent auditor will be appointed and announced in the future to measure the progress towards the Pledge being achieved.