Described as the “most significant innovation” in the brand’s history, the new bar will sit on shelves alongside the standard bar.
If the variant proved successful, it would be rolled out to other Dairy Milk products, the company said.
The new bar, to appear in 2019, underscored Mondelēz’s “ongoing commitment” to play a role in tackling obesity, including childhood obesity, in the UK, it added.
The news was welcomed by Public Health England (PHE), which has set the industry a 20% sugar reduction target by 2020.
Over the next two years, Mondelēz plans to introduce a new Cadbury Boost+ Protein, which would contain 12g of protein per bar and 32% less sugar than the standard Boost bar. It also aims to launch 30% less sugar variants of Maynards Bassetts products Wine Gums and Jelly Babies; and a 40% less sugar line extension on BelVita.
Scientists, nutritionists and chocolatiers
The reformulation drive is the outcome of two years’ work by a team of 20 scientists, nutritionists and chocolatiers at Mondelēz’s Reading and Bournville research and development facilities, the company said.
Together, they looked to find a way to maintain the taste of Dairy Milk while decreasing its sugar content by 30%. The bar also has no artificial sweeteners, colours or preservatives and contains no more calories than its predecessor.
Mondelēz said that by harnessing their “leading-edge understanding of flavour technologies and material science”, the team had successfully replaced the physical functionality of the sugar in solid chocolate in a way that “not only preserves the structure of chocolate, but also stays true to the unique texture and taste profile of Dairy Milk”.
Glenn Caton, Northern Europe president at Mondelēz International, said: “Our brands are a part of British culture and heritage and play a special role in people’s lives as treats to be enjoyed during a moment of indulgence.
“We are working hard to remind people of this – to help them make informed choices by providing clear nutritional information and labelling, as well as providing more choice by expanding our portion control offerings and improving the nutritional profile of our brands.”
Led by consumer and by scientific evidence
Caton maintained that Mondelēz International’s approach to health would always be led by both the consumer and by scientific evidence. Furthermore, it wouldn’t reduce sugar at the expense of increasing calories.
“Taking sugar out of our products isn’t easy and will take time,” he added. “Ultimately, they are treats and people expect them to taste great, but we’re working hard to find innovative solutions that provide more choice without compromising on their world-renowned taste and quality.”
In August 2016, the Government challenged all sectors of the food industry to reduce sugar by 20% by 2020 as part of its childhood obesity plan.
In May, PHE announced that food firms had failed in their target of reducing sugar by 5% in the period 2016/17.
On the latest development, PHE chief nutritionist Dr Alison Tedstone said: “We’re pleased that Mondelēz is the latest household name to commit to offering healthier products.
“This announcement shows reducing sugar in chocolate confectionery is possible and we look forward to seeing future reductions across more of its confectionery range.”