JUNE 5, 2021
NEW DELHI, INDIA: Swiss food and beverages major Nestle said less than 30% of its global portfolio, mostly representing indulgent products, does not meet stringent external “healthfulness” standards. Nestle’s statement comes at a time when it is stepping up consumer engagement across India after being hit by global reports that said more than 60% of its product portfolio falls into the unhealthy category.
“Recent reports have questioned the healthfulness of Nestle products, because of a global internal working document that was reported out of context,” said a Nestle India spokesperson. “The portfolio analysis only covers about half the global sales, since several prominent categories were not included.”
“Our approach as a credible, trustworthy and responsible company is to always communicate with consumers on facts, in a humble and transparent tone and manner,” said the spokesperson. “In fact, looking at the global portfolio as a whole, less than 30% would not meet stringent external ‘healthfulness’ standards, mostly representing indulgent products, which are acceptable in moderation as part of a healthy, balanced and enjoyable diet.”
The maker of KitKat and Maggi noodles said over the next few days it will enhance its engagement with consumers, reassuring them that it genuinely cares about what matters to them. The company, however, did not reveal the percentage of its domestic portfolio that falls into the healthy or unhealthy category.
A TOI report had earlier said Nestle aims to accelerate the launch of fortified products and reduce percentage of salt and sugar in its existing offerings.
An international presentation circulated among top Nestle executives earlier this year revealed only 37% of Nestle’s food and beverage products had a rating of over 3.5 as per Australia’s health star rating system in which products are given scores on a scale where maximum is 5.