Tesco Chief Commercial Officer Ashwin Prasad has praised the impact of changes, including the removal of HFSS multi-buy promotions, the rollout of signposting for healthier products and product reformulation, as positive moves that are yielding precise results by helping customers make healthier choices while still accessing the great value. The comments come a year on from the introduction of legislative changes for products high in fat, sugar and salt (HFSS) and as new data from Tesco shows an increase in healthy purchases by customers last year across several categories.
The data is published today in a new report from Tesco on progress against its healthy diets strategy, developed in partnership with the British Nutrition Foundation. The report outlines the steps it is taking to ensure shoppers can choose healthy, sustainable and affordable food:
Over half a million customers' shopping baskets at Tesco have become healthier since 2021.
3.3 million people purchased at least 10 percent more healthy products in 2022 compared to 2021.
A wide-ranging reformulation programme has removed 71 billion calories from own-brand products, with Tesco challenging its suppliers to follow suit and set clear reformulation targets.
Better Baskets zones in store, where products that are higher fibre, lower in sugar and calories, or produced in a way that's better for the planet are grouper - have driven a 12 percent increase in year-on-year sales volumes for Better Baskets products.
A digital Better Baskets hub has seen 80 percent of Tesco.com customers add at least one additional healthy item to their basket.
Tesco has set a healthy sales target of 65 percent by 2025 and continues to make substantial progress. In the past year, Tesco reports sales volumes of low and no-sugar drinks have grown 11%, sales of healthy snacking crisps have grown by more than half, and sales volumes of new and reformulated healthier biscuits have risen eight percent.
Tesco Chief Commercial Officer Ashwin Prasad said that the UK has record levels of obesity, significantly impacting the NHS and the broader economy and jeopardising the long-term health and prospects of the next generation.
"At Tesco, we have seen what's possible when we create the conditions and incentives to help people fill their baskets with products that are healthier and more sustainable but still affordable. I'm encouraged by the progress so far and look forward to even greater collaboration with our suppliers and partners as we work towards our 2025 goal," said Prasad.
Elaine Hindal, British Nutrition Federation CEO, said that by any credible measure, rates of ill health driven by poor diets are increasing. Despite best intentions, reversing this unacceptable reality cannot be delivered solely through the actions of well-meaning individuals.
"The pace and scale of the changes required to our food environment call for close collaboration and shared responsibility, and it is only by working together that we can balance the needs of a contemporary food system with better access to a healthy and sustainable diet for all," said Hindal.
"I am proud to be partnering with Tesco, as this represents exactly the collaboration and shared sense of responsibility I believe we need to deliver meaningful change with genuine impact to the UK food environment."