Food Standards Scotland has published its latest report on food and drink retail purchase in Scotland between 2014 and 2018, providing an update and further insight into price promotions, purchase of regular soft drinks, and pack sizes of confectionery, crisps and savoury snacks.
The report analyses data from Kantar on food and drink purchase into the home, and presents the following key findings:
- Purchase of calories, total fat, saturated fat and sodium increased between 2014 and 2018, whilst purchase of total sugar decreased over this time frame
- Discretionary foods continue to contribute disproportionately to total purchase of calories, fats and sugars, and there has been little change since 2014
- Purchase of regular soft drinks decreased, leading to a reduction in total sugar purchased from soft drinks. Despite this welcome reduction, there was also a large increase in purchase of regular soft drinks exempt from the Soft Drinks Industry Levy (SDIL)
- In 2018, 32% of calories were purchased on price promotion, decreasing from 41% in 2014 and 2015. Purchase on promotions remains skewed towards less healthy and discretionary products, such as confectionery, cakes, biscuits, pastries and crisps
- Multipacks were the most common pack type purchased within the crisps and savoury snacks category, whilst sharing packs were the most common pack type purchased within confectionery
Food Standards Scotland’s Head of Nutrition Science and Policy, Dr Gillian Purdon, said:
“Our analysis shows that there has been a welcome decrease in the purchase of sugary soft drinks, contributing to a reduction in purchase of total sugar overall, which is a positive step.
“However, discretionary foods continue to contribute disproportionately to total purchase of calories, fats and sugars, and purchase on promotion is currently skewed towards these unhealthy products.
“This latest evidence adds to our recommendations for changing and improving our food and drink environment, including limiting availability, marketing and promotion of these less healthy items which are high in fat, salt and sugar.”