Sugar Free / Less Sugar

Ironic and disturbing

With obesity a looming national issue, some things are hard to figure. As consumption of sugar-free and low-fat products has consistently risen during the past few decades, so has the populations’ weight.

One reason is the mistaken belief that a product that claims “low-fat” or “less-sugar” has fewer calories and gives you license to eat more of it.

Clearer Facts, Smarter Decisions

Most consumers would appreciate seeing the actual reduction or increase in calories that result from lowering sugar or other ingredients. That means most consumers aren’t automatically buying less-sugar claims as proof the product has less overall calories. When less-sugar claims are made, the Sugar Association would like manufacturers to disclose the actual difference in calories stated on the front of the package.

Proposed Sugar-Free Label

Low- or no-sugar products are on the radar for consumers with diabetes, or who are shopping for diabetic family members. Many are aware of the fact that it’s overall carbohydrate consumption they have to consider.

Confusion from the front: “less” is often the same

Front of package information, often in large or bold type, often touts “less sugar,” “sugar-free” or some other claim aimed at calorie-conscious consumers. But our poll found these misconceptions:

  • Almost half of consumers think that “low-sugar” products have fewer calories
  • And almost half of all consumers think “reduced sugar” means reduced calories

That simply isn’t always the case. For example, compare the calories in the regular fruit cereal v. the 1/3 less sugar formulation.

Ideal PDP Label