Nestlé has introduced a versatile and cost-effective sugar reduction technology that can be applied across different product categories, with benefits beyond sugar reduction. It can also produce low-lactose and skimmed milk-based products while reducing total sugars.
An enzymatic process reduces intrinsic sugar in ingredients such as malt, milk, and fruit juices by up to 30 percent, with a minimal impact on taste and texture. The sugar-reduced ingredients are then used in recipes for various products. There is no need to add sweeteners or bulking agents to replace the volume of the eliminated sugar.
Prebiotic fibres increase when the patented sugar reduction method is applied to milk-based products. First clinical studies have shown that these fibres can support the growth of multiple beneficial bacteria leading to a favourable microbiome composition in healthy adults.
Stefan Palzer, Nestlé Chief Technology Officer, said sugar reduction across the brand’s portfolio remained a top priority.
“This new technology is a true breakthrough, as we can reduce sugar without adding sweeteners while preserving a great taste, all at a minimal cost increase. In addition, our scientists discovered that sugar reduction generates prebiotic fibres that support the microbiome, which is an additional benefit. We are now accelerating the global roll-out across formats and categories,” said Palzer
The sugar reduction was first piloted in Southeast Asia's cocoa and malt-based ready-to-drink beverages. Nestlé had introduced it in factory lines for cocoa and malt-based powdered beverages such as Milo across Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Since 2021, sugar reduction technology has been applied to over 200 000 tons of cocoa and malt-based beverages. The roll-out continues, and other product categories, such as dairy powders, will follow.
The development of novel technologies is part of Nestlé's continuous efforts to improve the nutritional value of its products while supporting responsible consumption as part of a balanced diet. The new sugar reduction technology complements a wide range of existing solutions that Nestlé has developed over the years in collaboration with external innovation partners and suppliers. This includes natural sweeteners, sweetness-enhancing or bitterness-masking flavours, and natural bulking agents such as fibres, cereals, tailor-made dairy, and cocoa powders.