The chocolate bars you knew growing up are dead.
Okay, dead might be a tad dramatic. But they’re changing, big time.
Several big-name candy companies made a joint announcement last week, saying they’ll collectively be reducing the package size of their product. Yes, that means chocolate bars will be shrinking in size.
The companies claim the move is to lower the total calorie count of their chocolate products. The labels on the bars will now list the precise number of calories the bar contains.
The changes, which will all be done by 2022, are part of an effort to cease the high obesity rates in America. The announcement was made at a meeting organize by the Partnership for a Healthier America, which included participating brands like Mars Chocolate, Wrigley, Nestle USA, Ferrero, Lindt, Ghirardelli, Russell Stover, and Ferrara Candy Company.
How will the candy counter change?
The first step outlined by the companies will be making half of their individually-wrapped products offered by the candy companies available in smaller servings – no greater than 200 calories. In addition to lower calorie counts, the information on the label will be easier to read, and easier to understand, printed loudly on the front of each package. The calorie count will supposedly cover the entire bar or bag (this replaces the misleading serving-size nonsense).
Candy nutritional info will be more readily available, too. A new website, AlwaysATreat.com, will become a digital resource to help consumers understand the ingredients that are in their favorite candy or chocolate.
As of today, the majority of individually-wrapped treats sold by the companies already have under 250 calories per pack, so the change isn’t too drastic. But the added choice of size options gives people the flexibility to choose their level of indulgence.
“Educating the public about food products, even candy, is key to helping consumers make informed choices,” says Libby Mills, RD, spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
But despite the changes, “consumers need to remember that smaller portions with nutritional information on the packaging doesn’t mean that the candy item is healthy.”