The multinational giant said in a statement it remains committed to the HSR system, with the HSR currently appearing on more than 300 Nestlé packs in Australia and 180 in New Zealand. The move affects only Milo powder, while other Milo branded products including Milo ready-to drink UHT will retain the HSR.
Nestlé spokesperson Margaret Stuart said that this decision in no way reduces its commitment to the HSR system as a whole.
“It’s encouraging to see a growing body of evidence showing that the HSR is delivering on its key objectives. Crucially, it’s guiding shoppers who are comparing packaged foods within a category in store, and encouraging packaged food manufacturers to improve the nutritional content of their products, resulting in broader improvements across the food industry,” said Stuart.
Misunderstanding about the way the HSR is been calculated on Milo powder has been used to question the system. Nestlé has decided that withdrawing the HSR from Milo powder pending the outcome of the government review of the system will help to avoid confusion among consumers and reduce the risk of damage to a system the company supports.
“The system, which was developed with the input of many stakeholders, is fundamentally sound, scientifically robust and compares well with front of pack labelling systems in other countries,” Stuart said.
Nestlé has also decided not to extend the HSR to any other products prepared with milk, during the review period. In 2014, it was among the first companies to commit to the HSR system, rolling out consumer education on the HSR and applying it to packs later that year.
The HSR of 4.5 stars for Milo powder is in line with:
- the food regulation governing Milo as a Formulated Supplementary Food,
- the requirements of the Health Star Rating System,
- the Australian Dietary Guidelines and New Zealand Eating and Activity Guidelines which advocate lower fat milk for people over the age of two; and
- Nestlé’s desire to encourage our products to be consumed in the healthiest way possible.