Helping People Choose
HEALTHY PEOPLE, HEALTHY PETS
Keeping you informed is part of our job. We want to help you make the right choices for you, your family and your pets by providing clear and meaningful information about the ingredients we use in our products.
Informative and eye-catching — that’s how we like our packaging. We make sure that our packaging is informative, easy-to-understand and nice to look at, too. At the end of the day, we want you to be able to make the best choices for you and your family.
We were one of the first companies to use the Guideline Daily Amounts (GDA) 1, which shows how many calories and key nutrients are recommended as part of a balanced diet, on nearly all of our packaging. GDAs are presented as amounts or percentages of the daily-recommended intake per portion of our product. They are a consistent, fact-based and transparent way to provide information to help you build and maintain a healthy diet.
We display calorie GDAs on both the front of our packaging and — more extensively — the back. In 2014, we implemented GDA labeling globally on 99 percent of our chocolate, gum and confectionery and food products.
From proteins to trans fats, we show nutritional content and calories in all of our products so you know what you’re getting. We do our part to comply with national food regulations for nutritional labeling wherever we operate — if we make a specific claim for any nutrient, we mean it. Where there aren’t existing regulations on labeling or marketing claims, we uphold the guidelines in the Codex Alimentarius, which sets worldwide standards.
You can trust the science behind all of our health and fortification claims on Mars products. Our Fortification and Nutrient Claims Policy lays out how we do it. Everywhere we operate, our product claims will be truthful, straightforward and in compliance with all applicable legislation and regulations. Anywhere there aren’t local regulations for health, nutrition or fortification claims, we use robust internal standards and guidance from the Codex Alimentarius, where applicable.
PRINCIPLES IN ACTION 2015 SPOTLIGHT: LABELING TARGET
We know our consumers like to check the label. It helps them to understand what’s in our products, and to make the right choices for themselves and their families. One of the most important things on our labels is GDA information — Guideline Daily Amounts — which help make sense of the science, and put each portion into the context of an overall diet.
In 2015, more than 99 percent of all our chocolate and confectionery carried GDA labeling. Our Food brands have made great progress. From 92 percent in 2014, we’ve jumped to having 99 percent of our portfolio labeled with GDA information in 2015.
ONGOING TARGET: IMPLEMENT GDA LABELING ACROSS CHOCOLATE, CONFECTIONARY & FOOD
PROGRESS: MORE THAN 99 PERCENT MET IN 2015 — ON TRACK
"I'm delighted that Mars Food is helping to provide healthy solutions through our famous brands. Our Nutrition Criteria sets a very high standard for our products, and we also want to help our consumers understand the difference between 'everyday' and 'occasional' products within a balanced diet."
— Fiona Dawson, Global President of Mars Food, Drinks, and Multisales
THE ROAD AHEAD: GOING BEYOND GDA
Beyond GDA, we are taking steps to help our consumers continue to make the best choices for themselves and their families. In the U.K., we use the “traffic light” labeling scheme to make it even easier for our consumers to make the right choices. We supported the labeling of added sugars proposed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Through the new Mars Food Health and Wellbeing Ambition, we’ve also committed to providing on-pack guidance that let consumers know which products are right for “everyday” or “occasional” consumption. And we’re making sure that all products meet the high standards laid out in the Mars Food Nutrition Criteria.
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
To make our healthy living messages more meaningful to local audiences, we include nutritional information about our products on our global brand sites, such as the SNICKERS® Brand. Here are a few other resources and initiatives:
Clever Naschen , or “Smart Snacking,” in Germany
Mars Vida Saludable and Mars Vida Saudável or “Healthy Life” in Latin America
Planet Mars in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)
RESOURCES FOR PET OWNERS
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, such as:
Suggested feeding amounts to help owners manage their pet's weight — for example, on our U.K. PEDIGREE® Brand and global brand site for The Nutro Company
Our major scientific study on pet health: The Banfield® Pet Hospital State of Pet Health 2015 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.
Learn more about our responsible pet ownership initiatives. »
1This 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.
As part of our push for healthier people and pets, we’ve included nutritional information on our global brand sites.