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Europe: French consumers read ingredient, nutritional labels

While consumers in France value both ingredient and nutrition labels, they prioritize ingredient labels, according to a survey by Tate & Lyle.

To coincide with the 10-year anniversary of its innovation center in Lille, France, where its scientists work to make food and drink healthier and tastier, Tate & Lyle has published consumer insights revealing attitudes to ingredients and nutrients.

Key findings include:
• 69% of respondents in France read ingredient labels while 57% read nutritional labels.

• Awareness levels vary across different ingredient categories. For example, consumers in France are more likely to recognize sweeteners on a label than they are fibers.

• Consumers seeking ingredient information respond more positively to plant-based options and those associated with whole foods.

They are keen to buy products containing ingredients from nature, such as the sweetener stevia, when they are aware of the ingredient.

“With the continued focus on sugar’s role in the national diet, other nutrients such as dietary fiber haven’t had their share of the limelight, despite playing a key role in a healthy, balanced diet, and replacing sugar in some recipes,” said James Blunt, senior VP and international GM, stevia.

“By talking more about the range of fibers available on the market, which offer many health benefits, food manufacturers and nutrition professionals can help build public awareness of these ingredients and boost fiber intakes, which are currently below recommended levels.”