Like most states, Ohio has an obesity problem. While there are many factors contributing to this complex health issue, diet is certainly one. That is why beverage companies in Ohio and across the country have been taking actions in grocery stores and restaurants that are proving to be one way to tackle the issue.
Six years ago, beverage companies made a public commitment to reduce the calories people get from beverages by 20% nationally. We set out to use our strengths in product innovation and marketing to produce new options with less sugar and get people to try them.
An independent analysis shows that calories per person from beverages nationally have decreased 10%. Not only that, but calories have gone down four years straight in communities with above-average obesity rates where consumers have traditionally shown less interest in lower calorie drinks.
How is this happening? For three years (2018-20) 61% of all new brands introduced were either low-calorie or zero calorie. We’ve expanded on zero-calorie versions of longtime favorites and come up with brand new beverages that are attracting consumers. We’ve also expanded the options that come in mini-cans.
You can see the changes we are driving in the beverage aisle and at fountains in restaurants. Consumers are taking advantage of lower-calorie choices like flavored sparkling waters, zero-sugar sports drinks and no-calorie soft drinks.
The result is that today, nearly 60% of all beverages sold are zero sugar.
By offering more choices with less sugar, food and beverage companies can drive real and lasting change for our consumers.