Clear, Meaningful Product Information
We believe in helping people make the right choices for themselves, their families and their pets by providing clear and meaningful information about the ingredients we use in our products. All our retail products bear ingredient statements so consumers know what is in them.
The Guideline Daily Amount (GDA) labeling on the majority1 of our confectionery and food products provides consumers with information about the nutritional value of our products.
Because we want people to trust their favorite Mars brands, we have a comprehensive global Marketing Code to ensure we advertise our products responsibly. Mars also seeks to support parents in making healthy choices for their children. One important aspect of our Marketing Code is our commitment not to direct advertisements toward children 12 years of age or younger. Read more about responsible marketing.
Our product packages don’t just make our products look great — they also inform our consumers about what’s in the products they enjoy. We ensure that our packs are informative and easy to understand so that consumers can make the best choices for themselves and their families.
Guideline Daily Amounts (GDAs) show how many calories and key nutrients are recommended as part of a balanced diet. We were one of the first companies to sign up to GDA labeling, and have been using it on our products since 2008. GDAs are presented as numerical quantities, and where appropriate, as a percentage of the daily recommended intake per portion consumed. They are a consistent, fact-based, and transparent way to provide information to consumers to help them build and maintain a healthy diet.
We commit to displaying calorie GDAs on the front-of-pack, and more extensive, clearly identifiable Guideline Daily Amount (GDA) information on back-of-pack. In 2014, we implemented GDA labeling globally on 99% of our chocolate, gum and confectionery and food products.
We comply with relevant national food regulations on the nutritional labeling of our products across all markets in which we operate. Back-of-pack nutritional information includes energy (calorie) and nutrient content (including protein, carbohydrates, sugars, total and saturated fat, trans fat, sodium, and fiber). Information is provided per portion consumed, and where required, per 100 g or 100 ml. If we make a specific claim for any nutrient, we clearly label this and abide by all required nutrient claim regulations. Where no such regulations exist on labeling or marketing (claims) we refer to Codex Alimentarius for guidance.
We are continuing to explore new and innovative ways to provide helpful nutritional information to our consumers. We voluntarily participate in color-coded GDA labeling in the UK, and support the US Food and Drug Administration’s proposal for "added sugars" labeling in the US. In other markets, we look for labeling approaches that are supported by consumers, retailers, food manufacturers, and governments, avoid unnecessary complexity and support public health.
All health and fortification claims made on Mars products have a sound scientific basis and accurately represent the product’s benefits and intended use. Our Fortification and Nutrient Claims Policy lays out our approach here. In all markets where we operate, our product claims will be truthful, not misleading to consumers, and will comply with all applicable legislation and regulations. In the absence of local regulations for health, nutrition, or fortification claims, we use robust internal standards, as well as guidance set forth by Codex Alimentarius, where applicable.
Mars Food Labeling of Meals for “Occasional” Consumption
Some of Mars Food products contain higher levels of added sugar, salt or fat content to ensure an authentic taste. As such, these products are not meant for everyday consumption. We are proud to be one of the first global food companies to commit to provide guidance to consumers on-pack and on our brand websites, regarding how often these “occasional” meal offerings should be consumed within a balanced diet. Over the next five years, you will see new labeling on our “occasional” food products. The new labeling will indicate how often it is recommended you consume these products, based on how long it takes the body to restore balance after eating these meals. For many of these products, it is recommended that you only consume them in your family meals once per week.
Resources for Consumers
We include nutritional information about our products on our global brand sites, such as www.snickers.com, etc. We also have regional websites, which make our healthy living messages more meaningful to local audiences:
We also provide information to help people make educated choices about what to feed their pets, along with general resources on pet health and responsible ownership. Examples include:
Suggested feeding amounts to help owners manage their pet's weight, for example, on our UK PEDIGREE® and global NUTRO® brand websites
Our major scientific study on pet health: the Banfield Pet Hospital® State of Pet Health 2014 Report
Our partnership with the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, which provides information on the role of pets in children’s health and development. Read more about human animal interaction .
See Responsible Pet Ownership for more details.
Responsible Product Claims
We believe in providing truthful claims that do not mislead. To support our claims, we use the latest scientific expert views and conduct research in partnership with leading universities.
One example is our work with our sugar-free gum products in Europe. Sugar-free gum has been approved to make certain health claims related to the reduction of disease risk under the European Commission (EC) claims regulation. The EC's approval strengthens our ability to communicate the oral-health benefits of chewing sugar-free gum to consumers and professionals, and supports our aim to make a positive impact on oral health globally.
To bring this message to life, we’re reaching consumers around the world through our Oral Care brands – EXTRA®, FREEDENT®, and ORBIT® – and a united call to action: Eat Drink ChewTM. First launched in Australia in 2006 and now active in more than 40 markets, our Eat Drink ChewTM platform and accompanying “Break Up with Lingering Food” campaign show consumers that when brushing isn’t possible, chewing sugar-free gum is a great way to help keep teeth clean and healthy after eating or drinking.
We have a tremendous opportunity to use our Oral Care gum brands as champions for positive change, by encouraging healthy habits and giving people the confidence that comes with a happy, healthy smile. We are currently partnering with leading oral care experts from around the world to further define where we can make the greatest contribution. Read more about responsible product claims here.
Greater Consumer Choice
We offer a variety of products with different nutritional contents, and people can expect the same great quality and convenience no matter which product they choose. For example, the UNCLE BEN'S® product range offers a wide variety of white, wholegrain brown and flavored rice products, which have different nutritional values. People seeking a good source of fiber can choose UNCLE BEN’S® Ready Rice® Whole Grain Brown. In the US, many SEEDS OF CHANGE® and UNCLE BEN’S® wholegrain products contain quinoa, brown rice, whole wheat, wild rice, and whole barley, and are high in fiber.
Mars Chocolate provides a wide variety of snacks in a range of portion sizes to be enjoyed in moderation as part of a healthy and well-balanced lifestyle. For example, we have replaced some single large chocolate bars with multiple smaller bars in one package to make it easier for consumers to share or enjoy on more than one occasion. Mars Drinks offers a choice of decaffeinated and zero-calorie drinks for people who want to manage caffeine and calorie intake. Additionally, Wrigley offers many sugar-free gum brands that provide established oral care benefits.
*This excludes herbs and spices and condiment packs that are too small to label with GDA information as well as Mars Foodservice products, which are currently only labeled in the U.K. and will be labeled in the U.S. soon. Chewing gum, bubble gum, breath mints, drops, dental pastilles and medicated confectionery are exempt from GDA labeling because they contribute a negligible amount of nutrients (per serving) to the diet. This also excludes gift/promotional items.