Drinking to our health: can beverage companies cut calories while maintaining profits?
Article first published online: 10 NOV 2011
© 2011 The Authors. obesity reviews © 2011 International Association for the Study of Obesity
Volume 13, Issue 3, pages 258–274, March 2012
How to Cite
Kleiman, S., Ng, S. W. and Popkin, B. (2012), Drinking to our health: can beverage companies cut calories while maintaining profits?. Obesity Reviews, 13: 258–274. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-789X.2011.00949.x
- Issue published online: 17 FEB 2012
- Article first published online: 10 NOV 2011
- Received 12 July 2011; revised 14 September 2011; accepted 21 September 2011
- global beverage companies;
Carbonated soft drinks and other beverages make up an increasing percentage of energy intake, and there are rising public health concerns about the links between consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and weight gain, obesity, and other cardiometabolic problems. In response, the food and beverage industry claims to be reformulating products, reducing package or portion sizes and introducing healthier options. Comparative analysis on various changes and their potential effects on public health are needed.
We conduct a case study using the two largest and most influential producers of sweetened beverages, The Coca-Cola Company and PepsiCo Inc., who together control 34% of the global soft drink market, examining their product portfolios globally and in three critical markets (the United States, Brazil and China) from 2000 to 2010. On a global basis, total revenues and energy per capita sold increased, yet the average energy density (kJ 100 mL−1) sold declined slightly, suggesting a shift to lower-calorie products. In the United States, both total energy per capita and average energy density of beverages sold decreased, while the opposite was true in the developing markets of Brazil and China, with total per capita energy increasing greatly in China and, to a lesser extent, in Brazil.