Coca-Cola agrees to traffic-light labelling on drinks sold in UK

Empty Coca Cola Can

Coca-Cola has agreed to put traffic light-style labels on its drinks sold in the UK to help tackle the growing obesity crisis.

The move represents a major U-turn by the drinks giant, which makes brands such as Coke, Dr Pepper and Powerade, as it opposed last year's introduction of government-backed "hybrid" nutrition labels.

They use a combination of red, orange and green colours as well as information on recommended intakes of fat, salt and sugar to denote how healthy or unhealthy a product is.

"Our UK consumers have told us they want a single, consistent front-of-pack labelling scheme across all food and drink products to help them make the right choices for them and their families," said Jon Woods, the firm's general manager for the UK and Ireland. The new labels will appear on its products in the first half of next year.

Jane Ellison, the public health minister, praised Coca-Cola for adopting a scheme which, although backed by all the major supermarkets, is still being shunned by Kellogg's, Heinz, Unilever and others.

Richard Lloyd, executive director of the consumer group Which?, called on other major food and drink producers to follow Coca-Cola's lead and sign up.

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by Denis Campbell, for theguardian.com on Friday 5th September 2014 00.01 Europe/London

guardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010

 

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