One of the nation’s most trusted and loved brands Heinz, have launched a new tomato ketchup which contains less sugar. In order to tackle the UK’s obesity problem, this new ketchup has been made with 22.4pc sugar per 100g, whereas the original has 50pc.
A Heinz spokesperson said that “Sugar is increasingly high on the agenda and mums are looking at ways to cut sugar in their families’ diets. This is a key drive in the improved benefit mum sees between the old variety called ‘reduced sugar and salt’ and ‘50% Less Sugars’.”
Earlier this week it was warned that Britain faces £18.4bn in costs related to heart disease by 2020, a disease linked closely to obesity. On top of this, a study published in the Lancet Medical Journal found that the UK has more overweight people that anywhere in Western Europe except Iceland and Malta.
Heinz, founded more than 140 years ago offers a huge range of foods including soups, beans, pasta, baby food and frozen food. They have long held number one positions in key grocery categories with iconic products such as Heinz Beans, Heinz Cream of Tomato Soup and of course, Heinz Tomato Ketchup. The popularity of Heinz is demonstrated by the fact that 95% of UK households buy at least one Heinz product every year. The average household buy a Heinz product 18 times a year and more than 650 million bottles of Heinz Tomato ketchup are sold worldwide annually.
In order to tackle and reduce the amount of sugar in foods, a group of specialists which include cancer experts, cardiologists and pediatricians have formed. They work with the food industry and the government to crack down on products with high levels of sugar in processed foods, in order to improve the health of consumers. Katharine Jenner, campaign director for Action on Sugar said “We hope Heinz won’t stop there. We would like to see all their products lower in sugar, especially their main lines, and to reduce the sweetness too so our taste buds can get used to less sugar.”
Some of the sugar in the ketchup has been replaced by Stevia, a plant from South America that is grown for its sweet leafs. The extract of Stevia has up to 300 times the sweetness of sugar and has been used by Coca-Cola and Danone. Whether the product will be as popular as the normal Heinz Tomato Ketchup will not be known until the product is placed on 15th September. Though one thing that can be safe to assume, is that it is a better choice for customers trying to cut down their sugar and are concerned about health.