The Big Zero: there is no added sugar in our slush drinks

Sugar is back in the news again after the World Health Organisation (WHO) issued its new guidelines on sugar consumption at the beginning of March.

Big Zero ice fruit drinks don’t contain any added sugar. As we explained in our last post, some fruit slush drink manufacturers use sugar syrup. At Big Zero we use only natural fruit concentrate.

This makes a big difference to the overall amount of sugar in our drinks. Big Zero ice fruit drinks contain on average less than 8.5g of sugar in 100g of product.

How does this compare with official guidelines? Let’s start with UK government advice as set out in NHS Choices www.nhs.uk/pages/1139.aspx.

The NHS recommends reading labels carefully to find out how much sugar is in a product. At Big Zero we give you full and clear information on all nutritional aspects of our drinks, so you know exactly what’s in there. https://www.thebigzero.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/big-zero-nutritional-allergen-data.pdf.

NHS Choices advises that products containing more than 22.5g of sugar per 100g are regarded as high in sugar. Products containing less than 5g of sugar per 100g are low in sugar. So, at less than 8.5g, the natural sugar content in Big Zero ice fruit drinks is much closer to low-sugar than to high-sugar.

In contrast, the WHO points out that a single can of sugar-sweetened soda contains around 40g of sugar. Another study has calculated that a Big Mac strawberry milkshake contains over 60g of sugar. Big Zero ice fruit drinks are clearly a healthier alternative, especially for schools.

The WHO’s new recommendations repeat the guidance issued in 2002 that free (added) sugars should not provide more than 10% of a person’s energy intake, or daily calories www.who.int/nutrition/publications/guidelines/sugars_intake/en/

In the UK at present we get on average 16-17% of our calorie intake from sugar, so we should be trying to reduce the amount of sugar we eat and drink. The WHO has also suggested that the ideal target is 5%, although it has stopped short of making that an official recommendation.

NHS Choices has many helpful suggestions for how to reduce sugar consumption. Like the WHO, the NHS recommends clearer labelling on food products. At Big Zero we’re proud of the comprehensive information we give about what’s in our drinks. If you’re buying for a school, business or leisure facility, we tell you everything you need to know.

The NHS also advises that “drinking unsweetened fruit juice can help you cut down on overall sugar”. If you are still providing sweetened fruit juices, it’s time to switch to Big Zero ice fruit drinks with no added sugar.