OBJECTIVE: To assess the mean package size and manufacturer-recommended serving size of sweet beverages available in four high-income countries: Australia, Canada, the Netherlands and New Zealand.
DESIGN: Cross-sectional surveys.
SETTING: The two largest supermarket chains of each country in 2012/2013.
SUBJECTS: Individual pack size (IPS) drinks (n 891) and bulk pack size (BPS) drinks (n 1904).
RESULTS: For all IPS drinks, the mean package size was larger than the mean serving size (mean (sd)=412 (157) ml and 359 (159) ml, respectively). The mean (sd) package size of IPS drinks was significantly different for all countries (range: Australia=370 (149) ml to New Zealand=484 (191) ml; P<0·01). The mean (sd) package size of Dutch BPS drinks (1313 (323) ml) was significantly smaller compared with the other countries (New Zealand=1481 (595) ml, Australia=1542 (595) ml, Canada=1550 (434) ml; P<0·01). The mean (sd) serving size of BPS drinks was significantly different across all countries (range: Netherlands=216 (30) ml to Canada=248 (31) ml; P<0·00). New Zealand had the largest package and serving sizes of the countries assessed. In all countries, a large number of different serving sizes were used to provide information on the amount appropriate to consume in one sitting.
CONCLUSIONS: At this point there is substantial inconsistency in package sizes and manufacturer-recommended serving sizes of sweet beverages within and between four high-income countries, especially for IPS drinks. As consumers do factor serving size into their judgements of healthiness of a product, serving size regulations, preferably set by governments and global health organisations, would provide consistency and assist individuals in making healthier food choices.
- Cross-Sectional Studies
- Developed Countries
- Energy Intake
- Food Packaging
- New Zealand
- Portion Size
- Serving Size
- Sweetening Agents
- Journal Article
- Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't