Press releases

21 April 2017

It makes sense to promote sales of healthier options in hospitals but not to focus on soft drinks

Gavin Partington, BSDA Director General, said: 

“It makes sense to promote sales of healthier options in hospitals but not to focus on soft drinks, the only food and drink category which has seen a significant reduction in consumer sugar intake, down by over 18% since 2012.

“It’s also worth remembering that while sugar intake from soft drinks has been falling, obesity levels have been increasing.

“However, it's good to see NHS England taking a pragmatic approach to the issue by including all drinks that contain added sugar - milk-based drinks and coffee - but still allowing consumers a variety of options.”

Ends

Notes to editors

    • The Defra Family Food Survey (March 2017) shows that purchases of regular soft drinks fell by 34.6% between 2010 and 2015, whilst low calorie drinks purchases increased by 35.8%. https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/family-food-2015
    • According to the latest Government NDNS data soft drinks account for only 3% of calories in the average UK diet. (NDNS, Sept 2016)
    • Sugar intake from soft drinks has fallen by 18.6 % since January 2012. (Kantar Worldpanel, March 2017)
    • So when accounting for the volume growth, there has been a -23.5% decline overall. (Kantar, March 2017)
    • Since January 2015 sugar intake from soft drinks has been reduced by 11.6%  (-13.6% if we take into account volume growth). 
    • Almost 60% (58%) of soft drinks now sold in the UK are low and no calorie (BSDA annual report, July 2016)