Amid speculation and debate about a sugar-tax in Australia, an Australian beverage start-up has hedged its bets with new brand of dedicated sugar-free soft drinks.
With a goal of creating low-calorie beverages, Nexba recently launched a range of naturally sweetened soft drinks, Next Gen, to meet rising consumer demand for healthy beverage options.
Nexba’s products are stocked in thousands of convenience and retail stores around the nation.
Nexba co-founder Troy Douglas said Next Gen was crafted to have zero sugar and be naturally sweet so that customers would still love it. Each can of Next Gen contains less than 11 calories.
“Experts say more than half of Australians exceed the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) recommendations on sugar consumption and the result is weight gain and a higher risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease and even certain cancers,” he said.
“We believe Australians need natural alternatives to help reduce their sugar intake and avoid the harmful artificial sweeteners and ingredients like high fructose corn syrup.
“With one in four Australian children overweight or obese, having a healthy alternative like Nexba will empower parents to keep kids healthy and happy.”
Mr Douglas recognised the importance of Australians cutting back on their sugar intake.
“Most parents know they need to cut back on the amount of sugar their families take in. In fact, the 2016 Soft Drink Sugar Survey of Australian parents found that nine out of ten think it is either important or very important that they reduce the amount of sugar their kids consume,” he said.
He noted that only 30% of families surveyed have actually reduced their sugar intake over the past year, while some families admitted to consuming more sugar than before.
“When asked what they think would be most effective in reducing the amount of sugar their kids consume, 30% of parents agreed Australia needs alternatives that are healthy and taste good in order to help them cut back,” he said.
“We hope that the big food and beverage brands recognise that parents want and need healthy options and take action to help us curb our sugar addiction.”
According to the Australian Diabetes Council, Australians were “well aware of the health issues of sugar”, and on average consumed more than 20 teaspoons of sugar every day.
The Australian Heart Foundation recommended no more than nine teaspoons of sugar per day.