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Sugar and health

As concerns around non communicable diseases such as obesity and diabetes have grown in recent years, the debate about the health effects of sugar has intensified. As a sugar manufacturer with a specialist understanding of our product, we see it as our responsibility to communicate the knowledge we have about sugar, in order to contribute to a more balanced and informed discussions about sugar and health.


Supporting healthy choices

We believe that sugar is a part of a healthy, balanced diet, in line with the national food-based dietary guidelines. We take part in a number of activities to help people make informed choices about sugar and encourage healthy lifestyles. This includes sponsoring events and educational measures for children and young people aimed at raising awareness of the importance of a balanced diet and regular exercise.

By developing new products, and sharing knowledge with our customers, we help to provide consumers with a wider range of food and beverage options that support healthy lifestyles.

Our consumer marketing activities comply with the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) marketing codes. We are also committed to providing clear energy content labeling on all our consumer products. Read more on labeling in Facts about sugar - a common brochure initiative from the European food and drink sectors.

Supporting research

We support scientific research into the health effects of sugar, mainly through our membership of the World Sugar Research Organization and other industry bodies. We are favorable disposed towards supporting health studies – primarily on collaboration with food and health authorities – about food and exercise habits among particularly vulnerable groups of children and young people.

Sugar consumption trends

Contrary to popular belief, sugar consumption has remained relatively stable over the last 40 years, according to the statistics* of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO). According to supply statistics we have on EU average of 33 kg sugar available per person and year. The actual sugar consumption is probably below 33 kg on EU average because wastage accounts for a large proportion of the supply statistics and consumption.
Actual amounts from national studies of dietary intake of sugar shows a stable or decreasing tendency in most European Countries

*) Choose Food Supply - Crops. Under Items select "Sugar, Refined Equiv".

Data on sugar consumption trends by country is not available in all countries, some data from 13 countries in the developed world shows the development in dietary intake of sugar from the latest national surveys of dietary intake and further complicated by definitions of dietary sugars being highly variable.  Generally it was found that dietary sugar intake was either stable or decreasing, with increases seen only in certain subpopulations.

Read more about sugar consumption in Germany, Poland, Slovakia and the Nordic countries.

“In Nordzucker we believe that sugar is a part of a healthy, balanced diet composed in line with the national food based dietary guidelines. Obesity is not about eating too much of a single nutrient, it is a matter of having a total energy balance, which means having a balance between total energy intake and total energy expenditure”

Christian Kionka, Head of Communications & Public Affairs, Nordzucker.


Reference: FAOSTAT, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Statistics Division.*/E. For sugar choose ”Food supply – Crops Primary Equivalent”, and select country, year and elements.