Unilever indicators an reasonably priced wholesome meals information manifesto with challenger manufacturers

Unilever has signed a manifesto with challenger brands and restaurant chains to “make healthier food a better business”.

The manifesto, led by the Smash app promoting healthy food for young people, sets out the signatories’ goal to use prizes and promotions to increase adoption of “balanced options” and get the government to lower prices for lowering healthy foods.

Discussions with policy makers are “exploring changes in VAT that could improve the playing field for balanced foods and subsidize opportunities to market healthier foods,” the manifesto reads.

The signatories, which include Italian restaurant chain Zizzi, the sushi franchise and Tesco concession Yo Sushi, the recipe box brand Simply Cook, Ugly Drinks and the alternative meat brand, will also use pooled data to show that healthier and more affordable ones Options “can sell high” volumes “.

Unilever’s snack subscription box brand Graze is also listed as a signatory.

“Healthier is all too often more expensive, but it’s not brands’ fault,” said Chris Holmes, Founder and CEO of Smash. “Whether you’re a newbie like The Gut Stuff or a Unilever brand, the innovation, reformulation, and development cost of creating healthier options increases the cost of what starts out as a low volume product.

“The reality is that retail buyers don’t want to take the risk on new or unproven lines. So the way to get started is to increase the price and offer the buyer a higher percentage margin. This makes many products out of the reach of mass consumers.

“So far, nobody has proven the elasticity of healthier foods – the supply has been fixed. We need to prove that healthier foods can increase their volume by elasticity. ”

The Smash app, launched last week and offering discounts on healthier products to its young users, will use data from partner brands to “provide brands with evidence to help them with their customer purchases – to improve sales, get better shelf space and ultimately seeing your products have been traded for less healthy alternatives, ”explained Holmes.

“Every few years we see a new obesity strategy that sets guidelines, goals, and a long-term vision. However, the companies that control the food environment are not part of this vision, which is why we need to get them to the fold.

“There is a place for regulation, but nothing is as strong as consumer demand. With each new set of rules, companies spend more time understanding where the goalposts are going than figuring out how to win the trophy and get more fans, ”he added.

Holmes said the group would “like to see reduced media tariffs for non-HFSS products”. It will also drive reforms in the VAT system.

“To put it roughly, we could move from a system of taxing hot and cold foods to a system that gives you better food at a sustainable price point, regardless of the occasion,” he said.

The manifest document has been produced during roundtable events with several grocery brands and retailers over the past few months. It is assumed that others supported the manifesto but have not yet signed it because they were unable to obtain company approvals in time.

Christina Dunn, Unilever’s Director of Strategy and Innovation for Food and Refreshments, said: “At Unilever, we believe it is very important to make healthy choices easy. We play our role by reformulating our products to make them healthier, adding more positives, and moving consumers to healthier alternatives and smaller servings.

“We look forward to seeing the role these types of initiatives can play in helping people make healthier choices and working with Smash to explore how we can create an environment that supports healthy eating.”

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