Sugar off shelf for health
AUSTRALIANS are reducing sugar from their diets and choosing healthier snacks and drinks, according to new shopping habits research.
Grocery sales of overly sweet biscuits, spreads, dips, milk flavourings and yoghurt are shrinking as more lowsugar versions instead land in trolleys, a review has found.
The shift was tracked by combined Nielsen and The George Institute research matching nutritional details on product labels with sales information for the first time.
Nielsen director of food analytics Sarah McKee said health education and the availability of more wholesome alternatives was changing purchasing patterns.
“The search for low sugar is a new mainstream behaviour,” Ms McKee said. Almost three in 10 Australians were “very concerned” about sugar consumption, she said.
Most worried were people aged 55 or older; singles; and couples without children.
Excessive sugar contributes to risks such as weight gain and tooth decay, health experts warn.
The snapshot analysis found spending on high-sugar biscuits and spreads fell 9 per cent in the year to December.