All you need to know about the Nestle ‘Unhealthy’ food portfolio controversy

Nestle

What seems like an unfortunate confidential data leak has attracted criticism from millions. Here’s all you need to know about the controversy and Nestle is dealing with it.

Soon after the leak of an internal document that describes a large portion of Nestle products as unhealthy, Nestle has been facing stiff criticism. Since the release of the document, the news has been widespread and the company is now working towards damage control. 

What is the controversy? 

The leaked internal report by Nestle indicated that 60 percent of its food items and beverages don’t meet the required health standards. It further described that “only 37% of Nestle’s food and beverage products had a rating of over 3.5 as per Australia’s health star rating system.” Additionally, it claimed that Nestle products can never be healthy no matter how hard the company tries. 

As reported in the Financial Times, the leaked document was an internal presentation that was being circulated among the company’s top executives in early 2021. 

Nestle
Credits: Karthik Srininivasan

Nestle’s damage control 

Soon after Nestle announced that they are working on a company-wide project to update its health and nutrition strategy. To back it up, the food giant also said that they have reduced 14-15% of sugar and sodium in their product. 

In an official statement, Nestle said, “We believe that a healthy diet means finding a balance between wellbeing and enjoyment. This includes having space for some indulgent foods, consumed in moderation. Our direction of travel has not changed and is clear: We will continue to make our portfolio tastier and healthier.”

Also Read: All you need to know about the PETA India & Amul row over dairy-vegan milk debate

Following this, Nestle took over a wide range of newspapers on June 6 and June 7, 2021, to showcase the entire range of Nestle products and mark them as healthy.

Nestle
Credits: Karthik Srininivasan

The advertisement placed in newspapers also marks an E-mail Id and phone number in case a customer needs to give in suggestions or ask the brand about something.  

Nestle
Credits: Karthik Srininivasan

Nestle faced a similar situation when high levels of Monosodium glutamate (MSG) which is harmful to health were found in Maggi. Back then too, the brand rolled out a massive crisis management campaign across mediums.


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