Plamil Expressions Chocolate has been accredited with the new Sugarwise certification which helps consumers identify low free sugar content in food.
Sugarwise will be the only mark certifying foods that derive no more than 5% of their energy from free sugars – ‘simple’ sugars that are broken down quickly by the body, are accompanied by little fibre and other nutrients and can wreak havoc on people's health. Plamil’s Expressions Chocolate has a mere 1.5g of natural sugars in its 100g bar.
One of the most significant breakthroughs in the fight against the effects of free sugars to date, the newly developed Sugarwise test enables scientists to differentiate between a product's total sugar content and free sugar content for the first time.
The test was developed by Rend Platings in collaboration with scientists from The University of Cambridge, including esteemed sugar and carbohydrates expert Dr. Tom Simmons.
Rend Platings, Sugarwise Founder, comments: “I was shocked to hear that my daughter’s generation may be outlived by their parents. It’s not that we don’t know about the dangers of sugar, we do; the problem relates to our lack of access to healthier choices. I am hoping that Sugarwise will have the potential to change things in the same way Fairtrade and Organic labels have – both have successfully driven up demand and availability of products in their categories. We would all benefit if the same was the case for low free sugar products.”
In Summer 2015, a ruling by the government’s Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) stated that, taken as a whole, the population should get no more than 5% of their daily energy intake from free sugars. Although this directive was widely publicised, the British public have not been privy to tools that adequately help them make informed decisions, causing widespread confusion. While both on-pack nutritional labelling and Public Health England’s Sugar Smart app allow the consumer to understand total sugar content, neither take into account added (free) versus naturally occurring (intrinsic) sugars. Sugarwise will address this through a simple, easily recognisable label.
Dr. Tom Simmons adds: “The majority of the population far exceeds the 5% free sugar guideline amount and, at the same time, obesity and sugar-related illness rates are soaring. Because of this, we developed the Sugarwise test and certification to let people take control of their diets. It is about helping consumers make simple swaps and informed decisions. If Sugarwise encourages the food industry to address free sugar content the knock-on effect for society could be huge.”
Plamil MD, Adrian Ling, concludes: “Making wonderful tasting no added sugar chocolate has been our passion for a number of years, and we now have a fantastic range which also uses certified cocoa. We are committed to promoting and combining the health benefits of no added sugar with certified cocoa for our chocolate and fully behind all efforts in supporting retailers in offering a healthy and ethical alternative to sugar-based chocolate products. Wonderful tasting chocolate should be about cocoa, which has health benefits and not sugar."
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