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Reduced added sugar by 30% in baby food products in last 5 years: Nestle India

Nestle India asserted that its 'infant cereal products are manufactured to ensure the appropriate delivery of nutritional requirements such as protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, iron etc. for early childhood.'
Last Updated : 18 April 2024, 11:56 IST
Last Updated : 18 April 2024, 11:56 IST

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New Delhi: Nestle India on Thursday said it has reduced added sugar in baby food products in India by over 30 per cent depending on variants over the past five years, amid reports that the global FMCG major sold products with more sugar content in less developed countries.

According to findings by Swiss NGO, Public Eye and International Baby Food Action Network (IBFAN), Nestle sold baby products with higher sugar content in less developed South Asian countries including India, and African and Latin American nations as compared to its markets in Europe.

When reached out for comments, a company spokesperson said, "Reduction of added sugars is a priority for Nestle India. Over the past 5 years, we have already reduced added sugars up to 30 per cent, depending on the variant."

The spokesperson further said, "We regularly review our portfolio and continue to innovate and reformulate our products to further reduce the level of added sugars, without compromising on nutrition, quality, safety, and taste."

Nestle India asserted that its "infant cereal products are manufactured to ensure the appropriate delivery of nutritional requirements such as protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, iron etc. for early childhood."

"We never compromise and will never compromise on the nutritional quality of our products. We constantly leverage our extensive Global Research and Development network to enhance the nutritional profile of our products," the spokesperson said.

Stressing that compliance is an essential characteristic of Nestle India, the spokesperson said, "We will never compromise on that. We also ensure that our products manufactured in India are in full and strict compliance with CODEX standards (a commission established by WHO and FAO) and local specifications (as required) pertaining to the requirements of all nutrients including added sugars."

As per the report by IBFAN, around 150 different baby products sold in different countries were studied.

According to the report, Nestle's wheat-based product, Cerelac for six-month-old babies is sold without any added sugars in the UK and Germany but 15 Cerelac products analysed from India contained 2.7 grams of added sugar per serving on average.

The sugar content was declared on the packaging in India, the report said.

The highest sugar content in the product was 6 grams in Thailand. In the Phillipines, sugar content was found to be 7.3 grams in five out of eight samples tested and the information was not even declared on the packaging, according to the report.

Nestle India said it is "committed to delivering the best nutrition to our consumers, which we have been doing for over 100 years and would always maintain highest standards of nutrition, quality and safety in our products".

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Published 18 April 2024, 11:56 IST

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