Australia: Reducing Sugar In Soft Drinks Helps To Reconnect Consumers

Thursday, December 14th, 2017 | 904 Views

Australia’s total carbonated soft drink (CSD) volume sales are expected to see a 2.3 percent decline in 2017, according to market intelligence company Mintel. In fact, CSD sales dipped 4.7 percent in 2016 since 2014.

The CSD sector in Australia is facing continued pressure amid consumer concerns about sugar. A total of 1,406 people from the country’s major metropolitan cities participated in the survey, and it was found that negative sentiments towards sugar have driven many of them to reconsider their sugar intake.

One in three (34  percent) metro Australian consumers said that they are limiting the amount of sugar and sugar substitutes in their diets, while three in 10 (29 percent) are avoiding items with sweeteners. Furthermore, as many as three in five (58 percent) Australians said they are limiting their consumption of sugar and sugar substitutes in an effort to watch their weight, while over half (53 percent) do so because of future health concerns, such as developing diabetes.

Jenny Zegler, global food and drink analyst at Mintel, said: “With concerns about obesity rates and overall health in Australia, many consumers are now focusing on sugar and sweetener content when choosing food and drink. Carbonated soft drink companies that seek to reconnect with consumers must take into account that concerns about sugar and sweeteners will continue to be a focal point for consumers moving forward.”

Indeed, it seems there is close scrutiny on the sugar content found in CSDs among Australian consumers; 35 percent metro Australians said that they check for the level of sugar/sweetener content in CSDs and 30 percent check for the types of sugar/sweeteners.

It appears that many Australians have a desire for more clarity around sugar content. More than three in five (64 percent) said they feel cheated when a company is not clear about the high sugar content of its products. Additionally, 76 percent agree that food and drink companies should make it easier to understand how much sugar is in their products.

The report also stated that manufacturers could be more aggressive in creating reduced-sugar formulations, with 74 percent agreeing that food and drink companies should be doing more to reduce the amount of sugar in their products.