Nestlé slashes sugar content in new MilkyBar

Amid government initiatives to cut sugar consumption, Nestlé has claimed its new technology has reduced sugar in its latest MilkyBar by 30%.

Using a new method patented by the Swiss food giant, MilkyBar Wowsomes have 30% less sugar less than other similar products – without resorting to artificial sweeteners or alternatives such as stevia – but still retain a sweet flavour.

In 2016, the firm announced a sugar-transforming technique, changing its structure so that it dissolves quicker on the tongue, meaning less is required to retain the ingredient’s sweetness – much like candy floss. The process itself involves spraying sugar, milk powder and water into warm air, then drying out the remaining substance.

For the first time in MilkyBar’s 81-year history it has combined both milk and white chocolate in the same bar, the new Wowsomes will be available in white chocolate, or a mix of white and milk chocolate. Due in UK stores in the coming weeks, both variations will have creamy centres full of crispy oats.

MilkyBar Wowsomes will be available in single bars, multipacks of two and a bag with individually wrapped single pieces. The largest bars will be 18g and contain 95 calories each.

Public Health England’s chief nutritionist Dr Alison Tedstone showed enthusiasm regarding the new Wowsomes in an interview with The Guardian.

“This latest announcement shows innovation has a role to play in making everyday foods healthier and Nestlé’s leadership in this area should be applauded.

“We hope it will encourage other companies to explore the use of technology to make significant reductions and produce healthier products to meet the government’s 20% target by 2020.”

Public Health England aims to cut sugar consumption by at least 20% for 2020 across an array of products, with a 5% drop intended within the first year. Initially aimed at reducing intake among the under-18s, from 2017 the programme was extended to cover a total calorie reduction over multiple sectors.

This is running alongside a sugar levy specifically for soft drinks that comes into force on

6 April and is part of a larger bid by the UK government to tackle mounting childhood obesity and diabetes within the population – conditions four times more prevalent now than in 1980.

While Nestlé’s sugar wrangling method is not applicable to soft drinks – the substance dissolves too quickly to be contained in fluid – the firm’s developments are in line with long-term sugar reduction across multiple products.

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