Currently, 99% of SPAR Austria's private-label brands are already aspartame-free, with the milk and dairy portfolio going 100% aspartame-free as of this autumn.
In a study carried out in September 2023, some 80% of Austrian consumers said that they were 'concerned' by the WHO's recent classification of aspartame as 'possibly carcinogenic.
'The Next Logical Step'
“At SPAR we have anticipated the move away from too much sugar and artificial sweeteners in recent years," commented SPAR Austria board member Markus Kaser. "Particularly with our SPAR own-brand products, we want to focus on the natural taste and real enjoyment of food for consumers.
"Avoiding aspartame is the next logical step for us. We are working hard to remove aspartame from the last SPAR own-brand products for our consumers.”
According to SPAR Austria's survey, more than two fifths (41.2%) of respondents now consider the sugar content of products when shopping, surpassing attention to fat (28.4%) and calorie (24.5%) content. Eight out of ten individuals also contemplate sugar alternatives to some extent.
Some 56% occasionally opt for products with artificial sweeteners, but nearly 65% view them unfavourably. Additionally, 54% perceive artificial sweeteners as detrimental to their health compared to natural sugar alternatives and traditional household sugar.
Reasons for choosing products with artificial sweeteners include their presence in preferred products (49.8%), calorie-saving motives (34.7%), weight loss goals (15.1%), or a preference for less sweetness (12.3%).
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