16 September 2014

Response to research from School of Public Health, Curtin University

The Australian Beverages Council (ABCL) has responded to a call from Christina Pollard, School of Public Health at Curtin University, for interventions to limit soft drink consumption and research linking soft drink consumption to obesity.

CEO of the Beverages Council, Geoff Parker, says: “Obesity is a complex issue and isolating soft drinks as the single contributor to obesity overlooks many other factors. All foods and beverages can have a place in a sensible, balanced diet that is combined with regular physical.

“The soft drink category has undergone a fundamental shift in the past 15 years and now nearly one in two drinks consumed are non-sugar varieties, compared to 30 per cent in 1997,” said Parker.

“We have long recognised we can play a role, along with other stakeholders, in addressing the complex and multi-factorial issues of overweight and obesity. As an industry we have undertaken significant measures to provide consumers with more options and information to allow informed dietary choices. This includes more low-kilojoule choices, clear kilojoule labelling on the front of packs and smaller pack sizes.

“If we want a healthier country, we need better education about exercise and balanced diets.

“The fact that three of the four biggest selling soft drinks in Australia are now zero or low kilojoule shows that companies are taking significant action through innovation, reformulation and other initiatives to provide consumers with variety and choices consistent with healthy lifestyles,” Mr Parker concluded.

Media contact:

Geoff Parker – Chief Executive Officer, Australian Beverages Council

+61 (0)407 646 195

The Australian Beverages Council is the peak body for the non-alcoholic beverages industry and represents 95% of the industry’s production volume through membership.

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 160914 ABCL responds to research by Curtin University