Future regulatory pressure to address obesity could be eased by Kellogg’s traffic light labelling, says GlobalData

Following the news that from January 2019, Kellogg’s are to adopt the traffic light labels to show fat, sugar and salt levels in its products,

Tom Vierhile, Innovation Insights Director at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers his view:

“FMCG companies are under increasing pressure to head off government efforts to regulate or curtail the marketing of products deemed to contribute to health issues like obesity. What Kellogg’s is doing is pre-emptive self-regulation to steal the thunder from regulatory forces that may impose more draconian rules and regulations.

“UK consumers appear to be somewhat less likely to change their purchase behavior as a result of taxation intended to change shopping behavior and this undoubtedly plays a part in Kellogg’s actions. According to GlobalData’s 2018 Q3 global consumer survey, 41% of UK consumers said that their shopping behavior for high calorie foods or drinks would not change after the implementation of a sin-type tax, versus 25% of consumers globally. This suggests that regulatory authorities may feel the need to be even more empowered, going beyond sin taxes to change consumer behavior. Kellogg’s is likely responding to try to head off this impulse. Time will tell if they are successful in doing so.”

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