Multinational food company Nestlé is to introduce ‘Nutri-Score’ nutrition labelling on its products in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany and Switzerland from the start of 2020.

Over the course of two years, the company will apply Nutri-Score across its wholly-owned brands, while Cereal Partners Worldwide, the Nestlé and General Mills breakfast venture, will use the nutrition labelling on its product packaging in the same countries.

Nutri-Score will be shown on more than 5,000 products across the five countries. The voluntary front-of-pack scheme puts foods and beverages into categories and will show consumers the product’s nutritional profile using a coloured scale system from A (healthier choices) to E (less healthy choices).

The Nestlé brands that will display Nutri-Score include plant-based products from Garden Gourmet, Nesquik chocolate-flavoured milk, Buitoni pizza, Nescafe coffee, Maggi culinary products and KitKat chocolate. Cereal Partners Worldwide will display Nutri-Score on its breakfast cereals including Fitness and Chocapic.

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Nestlé Europe, Middle East and North Africa CEO Marco Settembri said: “Our ambition is to have one of the healthiest options in every product category we offer. Nutri-Score will motivate us and help track our progress. I am proud that Nestlé is the first company to roll out Nutri-Score at this scale in Europe. We now want to move quickly as we are sure this is the right way forward.”

Nestlé and Cereal Partners Worldwide are rolling out Nutri-Score in the five countries that are supporting the initiative and are ready to introduce it into more countries that volunteer or request it from the European Commission.

Cereal Partners Worldwide CEO and president David Clark said: “As leaders in the breakfast cereal sector, we can help everyone have a healthy, nutritious and tasty start to the day with our cereals. Our consumers are at the heart of this quest – past, present and future. That’s why we’re using Nutri-Score to guide the development and communication of the nutritional value of our products.”

BEUC director-general Monique Goyens said: “BEUC, the European Consumer Organisation, applauds Nestlé’s decision to broadly roll out Nutri-Score. We can only recommend that other companies follow Nestlé’s excellent example and display Nutri-Score on their products. Moving forward, we believe that all European consumers should benefit from Nutri-Score. This is why several consumer organisations, who are members of the BEUC network, have launched a petition asking the European Commission to make Nutri-Score mandatory across Europe.”