EVA Details UNESDA Policy Of Nixing Sugared Soft Drinks In European Union Schools

Posted On: 10/5/2017

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BRUSSELS -- The European Vending Association has summarized the effect on the vending industry of the recent decision by the Union of European Soft Drink Associations to halt the sale in secondary schools of soft drinks containing added sugars. The decision extends UNESDA's school policy: in 2006, the group's members voluntarily agreed to end the sale of sugar-added soft drinks in primary schools, and to refrain from advertising them to children under the age of 12.

EVA explained that the policy impacts all retail channels within the school environment, including canteens, "tuck shops" (snack bars) and vending machines. No soft drinks with added sugars are to be sold in secondary schools, but zero sugar and no-added-sugar drink formulations are still allowed.

Vending machines in secondary schools must be unbranded, EVA added, to conform with the noncommercial aspect of school environments that has been required since 2006. The new UNESDA policy impacts products, but not machines; operators can continue to place cold drink venders in school environments.

The voluntary move will affect 50,000 secondary schools and more than 40 million young people in the 28 European Union countries, EVA reported. Complete implementation is expected by the end of 2018, at which time UNESDA member companies will provide only no- and low-calorie soft drinks in secondary schools.