More than 60% of Nestlé’s food and beverage portfolio was rated “unhealthy” in an internal company presentation earlier this year.
Ground Report | New Delhi: The world’s largest food company, Nestlé, has recognized in an internal document that more than 60% of its main food and beverage products do not meet a “recognized definition of health” and that “some of our categories and products will never be ‘healthy’ no matter how much we renew ourselves , “reports the ‘Financial Times’.
Nestle’s ‘unhealthy’ food
A presentation that circulated among the company’s top executives earlier this year, and which the aforementioned newspaper has had access to, says that only 37% of Nestlé’s food and beverages by revenue , excluding products such as pet food and specialty medical nutrition, achieve a rating above 3.5 under the Australian Health Star Rating System.
This system rates food with up to five stars and is used in research by international groups such as the Foundation for Access to Nutrition. Nestlé, market of KitKat, Maggi or Nescafé noodles, describes the 3.5-star threshold as a “recognized definition of health.”
Within its global food and beverage portfolio, about 70% of Nestlé’s food products fell short of that threshold, according to the presentation, along with 96% of beverages – excluding pure coffee – and 99% of the portfolio of Nestlé ice cream and confectionery products.
The water and milk products performed better , since 82% water and 60% milk products reached the threshold. We have made significant improvements to our products… (But) our portfolio continues to fall short of external definitions of health in an environment where regulatory pressure and consumer demands are skyrocketing, the presentation read.
“The job of food companies is to generate money for shareholders and generate it as quickly and in the largest amount possible. They are going to sell [junk food] products that reach a mass audience and are bought by as many people as possible, “said Marion Nestle, a professor at Cornell University in the United States.
Several harmful products were also presented in the presentation – this is Digiorno pizza with meat on puff pastry: it contains 40% of the daily sodium requirement, and Hot Pockets pizza with pepperoni – 48 of the daily sodium requirement.
The British newspaper adds that the company updates its internal nutrition standards, known as the Nestlé Nutritional Foundation, which were presented under former CEO Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, who characterized Nestlé as a “nutrition, health and wellness company”, therefore that one option could be to remove or replace these standards for products considered candy, such as candy.
IRA filed lawsuit against nestle in February
In February of this year, the American human rights group International Rights Advocates (IRA) filed a federal class action lawsuit in the United States against Nestle, Mars and Cargill over allegations of child labour and complicity in human trafficking. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of eight Mali citizens who said they were sold into slavery as children and were forced to harvest cocoa in Côte d’Ivoire. A spokesman for Nestlé said at the time that the company had a “clear policy against child labor and is working to address this problem.” Nestlé also said the lawsuit “does not contribute to the overall goal of eliminating child labor in cocoa production.”
Nestlé bought these brands of healthy nutrition and supplements
Nestlé announced an agreement with the US investment firm KKR to buy for US $ 5.75 billion emblematic brands of its company Bountiful, specialized in nutrition products and supplements. Nestlé, one of the most powerful multinationals in the world and whose main business is agri-food , is expanding its healthy nutrition business. With this transaction, Nestlé has acquired at least four Bountiful brands and private business labeling in the United States.
Meanwhile, Nestlé declares that it is working on a project to update its pioneering strategy in nutrition and health. “We are looking at our entire portfolio at different stages of people’s lives to ensure that our products help meet their nutritional needs and support a balanced diet.”
“We are looking at our entire portfolio across the different phases of people’s lives to ensure our products are helping meet their nutritional needs and supporting a balanced diet,” Nestle said after the report.