Some cereal bars do not live up to their ‘healthy’ image, Which? finds

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18th March 2015 16:48 - Food

A recent survey by Which? has found that a large amount of the UK’s most favoured cereal bars and breakfast biscuits would be best suited to the sweets and chocolate aisle, due to them containing between 30 and 40 per cent sugar.

Which?, a UK consumer advocacy group, researched 15 of the nation’s favourite cereal bars such as: Nutri Grain, Alpen, Nature Valley and Eat Natural bars.

Some cereal bars - which contained over 40 grams of sugar per 100 grams of product - were deemed by Which? as an untrue reflection of their ‘healthy’ image.

The Which? report said of the findings; “We found Kellogg’s Coco Pops snack bar – aimed at children – was the worst offender of those we looked at, made up of a staggering 42 per cent sugar. Others marketed at children, such as Kellogg’s Rice Krispie bar, Frosties Bar and Harvest Chewee (milk choc chip) were also high in sugar and saturated fat.”

Out of the 15 cereal bars investigated, the results found that 12 of them would be categorised under the red traffic light labelling.

The results ranged from 22.3g of sugar in McVities oat and honey breakfast biscuits to 42g in a Kellogg’s cereal bar.

Some cereal bars do not live up to their ‘healthy’ image, Which? finds


As it stands, the UK’s Guideline Daily Amounts for sugar intakes are 120g for males and 90g for females. Children should only consume 85g of sugar per day.

The World Health Organisation have claimed that no more than 10 per cent of an individual’s daily sugar intake should come from free sugars.

The World Health Organisation added that 5 per cent would be more desirable.

The findings appeared to support that of a previous survey by Which?, conducted in 2012.

The 2012 survey found that the 30 best-selling cereal bar brands have high sugar and saturated fat contents.

Kellogg's said of its cereal bar’s sugar content: “There are fewer than two teaspoons of sugar in a Coco Pops Snack Bar – that’s 9 per cent of your reference intake. We clearly label all our foods so people can make informed decisions about what they buy.”

In the most recent findings, just one cereal bar (Mars’ Tracker bar) had incorporated the traffic light labelling into their packaging.

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