Media Release
30 November 2011

Industry welcomes the Federal Government’s decision to not support traffic light labelling.

The Australian Beverages Council, representing 95% of the non-alcoholic beverages industry, has today welcomed the Federal Government’s decision to not support the Blewett Report’s recommendation for traffic light labelling at this time.
“As noted by Minister Roxon, with no credible bank of evidence as to any measurable benefits from traffic light labelling in addressing unhealthy diet and poor eating habits, the decision to not support traffic light labelling has been welcomed by the non-alcoholic beverages industry and is one of commonsense ” said the Council’s CEO, Mr Geoff Parker.

“The industry notes the Government’s desire to pursue other options for a single front of pack labelling scheme. The beverages industry would welcome collaboration with food regulatory and health agencies as well as consumer groups to examine new ways of further improving understanding and use of the existing scheme, the Daily Intake Guide (%DIG), which covers over 90% of the volume of drinks consumed in Australia each year” Mr Parker said.

“The industry recognises obesity is a complex problem and knows it has a role to play in any solutions framework. That’s why in 2006 the industry voluntarily introduced the DIG thumbnail. Maintaining a healthy weight is about energy in versus energy out. The DIG thumbnail gives a quick account of what energy contribution the drink makes to this equation and consumers wanting more information can turn the can or bottle around and look at the Nutrition Information Panel.
“The industry is committed to providing a variety of products for every lifestyle and occasion. All of our products can be part of an active, healthy lifestyle that includes a sensible, balanced diet and regular physical activity” Mr Parker concluded.

Media contact:
Geoff Parker – Chief Executive Officer, Australian Beverages Council
+61 (0)407 646 195
www.beveragehealth.org.au