The Candy Industry Wants to Cut Back on Sugar and Calories

Joanna Fantozzi
Hold onto your Hershey bar: Your candy is about to get a whole lot smaller, or at least that’s what the sweets industry promises. Due to industry pressure and rising levels of health awareness, the National Confectioners’ Association — whose members include Ferrero, Ghirardelli, Lindt, Nestlé, Mars...

Hold onto your Hershey bar: Your candy is about to get a whole lot smaller, or at least that’s what the sweets industry promises. Due to industry pressure and rising levels of health awareness, the National Confectioners’ Association — whose members include Ferrero, Ghirardelli, Lindt, Nestlé, Mars, and Wrigley — has committed to cutting back on sugar and calories in its members’ products. The candy industry seems prepared to follow in the footsteps of Big Soda, which made similar promisesin 2014.

By 2022, the association has pledged that half of its members’ candy and chocolate products will contain 200 calories or fewer. The confectioners also plan to reduce sugar content and to showcase calorie content on the front side of 90 percent of candy packaging.

“Over the next five years, the participating chocolate and candy companies will help consumers better understand the unique role that confections can play in a happy, balanced lifestyle,” John Downs, president and CEO of the National Confectioners Association, told the trade magazine Candy Industry. “As we focus and leverage the companies’ expertise in marketing, innovation, and distribution, our goal is to reinforce for consumers that chocolate and candy are treats.”

But as Triple Pundit notes, most of the aforementioned companies are not touting their participation in this initiative, and have not sent out press releases, with some exceptions.

“This is the right thing for the business,” Tracey Massey, president of Mars Chocolate North America, told Fortune. "We don’t want to grow at any cost. Better to do the right thing than be regulated.”

Trying to cut down on candy? Start here with the 7 Healthiest Candy Bars.