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Sweet deal Food companies agree to cut back on sugar

Sugary processed foods - of which breakfast products compose a healthy fraction - are under scrutiny amid worries over obesity, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. 


Ten food producers and distributors have signed an agreement with the Swiss interior ministry, promising to rethink the sugar content of their breakfast products.

They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, which is perhaps why it was the subject of Swiss interior minister Alain Berset’s visit to the Swiss Pavilion at the Milan Expo on Tuesday.

Berset presided as ten food companies – including Nestlé and Swiss grocery giants Coop and Migros – voluntarily signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the interior ministry describing a four-year plan to reassess the sugar content of their breakfast products.

The companies agreed to lay out a series of target actions for the next four years, with a review scheduled two years from now. This reassessment effort will be undertaken with the aid of the Swiss Federal Food Safety Office.

The action comes under the Federal Office of Public Health’s Actionsanté programme (“eat better, move more”), which encourages businesses to promote healthier lifestyles in addition to promoting their products.

Berset, who has had success in the past with a similar programme to control salt intake, said that sugar from processed foods should not account for more than 10% of calories consumed. and agencies

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