Wed | Jun 26, 2019

Wisynco lowers sugar for schools - Company to implement new beverage policy in November

Published:Saturday | September 29, 2018 | 12:00 AMNickoy Wilson/Gleaner Writer
Wisynco Chairman William Mahfood takes a selfie with star athlete Christopher Taylor of Calabar High at the handover ceremony of funds from Wisynco for the creation of Calabar’s gymnasium at the Jamaica Baptist Union headquarters in St Andrew on Friday, September 28.

Chairman of the Wisynco Group William Mahfood has announced that effective November 1, his company will no longer sell beverages that have more than six grams of added sugar per 100ml to preparatory, primary, and secondary schools.

"Obesity is a complex problem caused by several factors, and as a total beverage company, we recognise we can contribute towards this solution. We encourage everyone to increase exercise as that is the primary way to ensure good health, and simultaneously, Wisynco will adjust the portfolio of beverages sold directly to preparatory, primary, and secondary school canteens and through our concessionaire partners across the country," Mahfood said.

He made the announcement yesterday while speaking at a ceremony at the Jamaica Baptist Union headquarters on Washington Boulevard, St Andrew, for the handing over of funds for the creation of a gymnasium at Calabar High School.

 

NEW GOV'T POLICY

 

The company's decision to change its beverage policy comes on the heels of the Government's new policy to reduce sugary drinks in schools, which is set to come into effect on January 1, 2019.

"In anticipation of and in preparation for the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Education's new health policy, Wisynco will pre-empt and ensure focus on healthy products for children," Mahfood said, while highlighting that the move was in line with his company's current direction of trying to formulate its various products using less sugar without compromising taste and quality.

"We started a programme some time ago, [actually] in the last two years, doing a lot of intensive research and product development using lower sugar content in our formulation, and so forth. So we continue to look at ways and new formulations to try and reduce the sugar intake for our consumers as a part of our mandate to improve the lives of our people (Jamaicans)."

nickoy.wilson@gleanerjm.com