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How to go about choosing healthier beverages

We thank Mr Cheong Wing Kiat for his letter “Confusing Nutri-Grade labelling system on sugary drinks” (Dec 9).

Nutri-Grade labelling enables consumers to better identify sugar-sweetened beverages that are higher in sugar and saturated fat, and encourages the food and beverage industry to provide healthier options.

Pre-packaged beverages with higher sugar and saturated fat content are required to carry the Nutri-Grade “C” or “D” label.

For beverages graded “A” or “B”, Nutri-Grade labelling is voluntary. Businesses are still encouraged to label beverages graded “A” or “B” with the Nutri-Grade label and/or the Healthier Choice Symbol, to help consumers make informed choices. We encourage consumers to choose healthier beverages labelled “A” or “B” or with the Healthier Choice Symbol, or simply drink water, while limiting their intake of beverages labelled Nutri-Grade “C” or “D”.

Products allowed for sale as Chinese Proprietary Medicine (CPM) contain ingredients for medicinal purpose, and are not subjected to the Nutri-Grade requirements. The placement of CPM products in retail stores is at the discretion of the individual businesses.

Chow Wai Leng (Dr)
Director, Disease Policy & Strategy
Ministry of Health

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