Cereal Partners promises lower sugar levels

Cereal Partners Worldwide, the global joint venture between Nestle and General Mills, has committed to further reduce sugar levels in cereals advertised to children by an average of 20%.

The company, which owns brands including Shredded Wheat, Shreddies and Cheerios, says it wants to reduce the sugar content of cereals advertised to children to single-digit levels per serving.

It follows the government’s food watchdog, the Food Standards Authority announced a consultation to clamp down on sugars, saturated fats and extra large portions.

Jeff Harmening, president of General Mills’ cereal unit, says: “Ready-to-eat cereals, including pre-sweetened cereals, account for only 5% of the sugar in children’s diets. Still, we know that some consumers would prefer to see cereals that are even lower in sugar, especially children’s cereals.”

The maker of cereal and other packaged foods says it expects to reduce the sugar content of its cereals to 11 grams or less by spring. The moves are in addition to prior initiatives, starting from a target of 12 grams or less.

Harmening claims General Mills has already reduced sugar in some of its cereals by as much as 20% and CPW’s new commitment to reduce sugar content further by an average of 20% will be carried out using existing technologies – as well as through advances that will be developed by the new CPW Innovation Centre, once it is fully operational in 2010.

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