UK – Global cereals firm, Kellogg’s plans to include colour coding (traffic light labels) on its cereals packaging in the UK from early next year in a commitment to help customers make healthier food choices.
According to the company, the voluntary labels will first appear on breakfast cereal packs made exclusively for sale in Britain, including Coco Pops, Crunchy Nut, Corn Flakes, Rice Krispies, Frosties and Special K from January, with a target to include all products by 2020.
The colour coding labels, almost synonymous to traffic light system will inform consumers on levels of sugar, salt, fat using red, amber and green traffic light colours.
It will show whether these additions are in high, medium or low quantities based on the amount per 100g.
Kellogg’s UK managing director Oli Morton said the decision was motivated by a survey carried out on 2,000 Britons on their attitude on labeling.
“Put simply, they said we should change and move to a full colour solution as they want help making healthy decisions.
We’ve listened and now we’re acting,” he said.
The UK government adopted traffic light labelling system in 2013 and had asked food companies and retailers to voluntarily adopt the system.
With rising consumer awareness on what is contained in their food, consumer group Which? had earlier this year called for mandatory traffic light labelling post-Brexit to shed light on sugar, salt and fat in consumer products.
Which? researchers are reported to have analysed 31 cereals, porridges and granolas and found they could contain more than three quarters of an adult’s recommended daily maximum of free sugars in one portion, with the true sugar level not reflected on the packaging.
“While this is a very positive move from Kellogg’s, it should apply to all the brand’s products sold in the UK and Ireland, not just 80% of them,” said Sue Davies, Which? strategic policy adviser.
Dr Alison Tedstone, chief nutritionist at Public Health England, said: “Clear information is the foundation of healthy choices, so we’re pleased that Kellogg’s is adding traffic lights to its front-of-pack labelling.
“This announcement highlights the importance of helping consumers to make informed choices and we hope other companies will follow suit.”