Product variety in Australian snacks and drinks: How can the consumer make a healthy choice?

Karen Zell Walker, Julie Lorraine Woods, Cassie Allan Rickard, Carrie Ka Wei Wong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVE: To estimate the proportion of snack food and beverage choices available to an Australian consumer. DESIGN: A survey of product Nutrition Information Panels (NIP) and product labels on snack foods and beverages offered for sale. Data on nutrient content were compared with criteria from different nutrient profile systems to estimate the proportion of items conforming to a choice. SETTING: A large supermarket in metropolitan Melbourne, Australia. RESULTS: A consumer could choose from 1,070 different snack foods and 863 different drinks. Flavour variety was more common in snacks (maximum thirteen per product) while variation in container size was more common for drinks (up to ten per product). Recommended serving size for snacks varied greatly (1822 of snack foods presented for sale could be deemed by multiple criteria. Similarly, only 14 healthy healthier snack foods and beverages, e.g. by reformulation of many products by the food industry and their presentation in smaller, standardised portion-size packaging.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1046 - 1053
Number of pages8
JournalPublic Health Nutrition
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2008

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