We developed the Mars Food Nutrition Criteria based upon recommendations from the World Health Organization (WHO) and other leading global public health authorities. These criteria help us measure the nutritional content of our current products against dietary recommendations for added sugar, salt and fat.
We are using the Mars Food Nutrition Criteria to guide our product innovation and reformulation and to help us track the nutritional composition of our portfolio over time. We aim to develop products that fit into healthy diets balanced over the course of several days, allowing for the occasional treat or special meal.
To meet our Nutrition Criteria, we aim to:
Reduce sodium across our global portfolio by an average of 20 percent by 2021
Reduce added sugar in a limited number of sauces and light meals by 2018
By the end of 2016, we will expand the Mars Food Nutrition Criteria to include goals for increasing the amount of whole grains, fiber, fruit and vegetables in our products. For example, we plan to expand multi-grain options, so that 50 percent of our rice products include legumes or whole grains. We also plan to ensure that all of our tomato-based jar products include at least one serving of vegetables.
The Mars Food 2021 sodium reduction commitments are above and beyond sodium reduction Mars Food accomplished between 2007 and 2012, when it reduced sodium across its portfolio by 25%. This success is the result of our partnerships with government initiatives, such as voluntary reduction commitments in different regions. Our efforts began in the U.K., which has the most stringent salt reduction standards, and we are following the country’s leadership in this area. We have committed to reduce the sodium content of our products across the European Union (EU), based on the criteria set out by the U.K. Food Standards Agency/Department of Health (FSA/DoH). Our U.K. Food portfolio is 100 percent compliant with the FSA's targets. In the U.S. we joined forces with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene's National Salt Reduction Initiative (NSRI).