Zurich, Switzerland: Nestle, the world’s largest food company, announced Monday that it was working on a new nutrition strategy after the Financial Times published an internal document revealing that the majority of its foods and beverages were unhealthy.
According to the British business daily, an internal presentation sent to top executives earlier this year found that more than 60% of Nestle’s mainstream food and drink portfolio did not fit the “recognized definition of health”
The Financial Times obtained a copy of the presentation, which revealed that only 37% of Nestle’s food and beverages by revenue (excluding pet food, baby food, and specialized medical nutrition) received a grade of more than 3.5 on Australia’s five-star health rating system.
Nestle, which owns chocolate, coffee, and baby food brands, has been rearranging its activities for several years to focus more on health and wellbeing as customers reject frozen pizzas and sugary drinks.
The Swiss firm has been putting a strong emphasis on vegetarian and vegan products, among other things amid a recent boom in the plant-based food sector.
“We have made significant improvements to our products,” the Nestle presentation said, according to the FT.
But, it added, “our portfolio still underperforms against external definitions of health in a landscape where regulatory pressure and consumer demands are skyrocketing.”
A Nestle spokeswoman told AFP the company was currently “working on a company-wide project to update its pioneering nutrition and health strategy.”
“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,” she said
The initial focus, she added, would be on “assessing the part (of) our food and beverage portfolio that can be measured against external nutrition profiling systems,” like the Australian system.
Nestle is to disclose its new strategy this year, according to the Financial Times.
According to the article, the corporation may withdraw products that lower its health ratings, such as confectionery items, citing an unnamed source acquainted with the matter.
In April, the Swiss food giant strengthened its position in the health nutrition sector by announcing that it is in talks to buy The Bountiful Company, a manufacturer of vitamins and nutritional supplements in the United States.
“It is in discussions to acquire all or part of The Bountiful Company,” Nestle stated in a statement, without revealing further specifics, We The World Magazine reported.