The Food Magazine - Click to return to the home page

Cereals 'cannot be serious' says Food Commission

30th July 2002

The latest generation of breakfast cereals are as sweet and fatty as biscuits or cake, reports The Food Magazine today.

Using the manufacturers' own declarations of the levels of sugar, saturated fat and total fat, a survey of ten top products from reputable companies -- including Quaker's Harvest Crunch, Jordans' Country Crisp, Mornflake's Triple Chocolate Crisp and similar products from the leading supermarkets -- found that the products were nutritionally equivalent to chocolate chip cookies or chocolate cake.

'We are all encouraged to think of breakfast cereals as healthy foods, and health promoters tell us to eat more of them and to cut back on sweet, fatty foods like cakes, pastries and biscuits,' said Food Commission director, Dr Tim Lobstein. 'But now we find that some cereals are undermining the message.'

'The products are stacked on the supermarket shelves along with healthier breakfast cereals, but they don't belong there,' he said. 'They should be in among the biscuits and cakes.'

The cereal products contained fat levels of up to 20% (with saturated fat up to 12%) and sugar levels of up to 30%. In comparison, chocolate chip cookies were 24% fat (with 12% saturated fat) and 22% sugar. Chocolate cake was 10% fat (with 6% saturated fat) and 34% sugar.

More information

Click here to view a PDF copy of the full article or see page 19 of The Food Magazine issue 58, July/September 2002