Limiting sugary drinks - a financially viable option

Limiting sugary drinks - a financially viable option

On-site retailers at The Alfred have been involved in a series of world-first trials that support the financial viability of limiting sugary drink sales.

Alfred Health and its key on-site retailers conducted four trials to test whether relatively small changes could support healthier choices. The trials included removing sugary drinks from view, removing sugary drinks from self-service fridges, increasing the price of sugary drinks in store, and increasing the price of sugary drinks in vending machines.

In each of the trials, sugary drink sales reduced by between 10% and 71%. Customers continued to make drink purchases, but shifted their selections to healthier choices. As a result, there were no significant differences in total drink sales throughout the trials.

Alfred Health’s lead for population health and health promotion, Kirstan Corben said the trials were successful in reducing the number of sugary drinks sold by approximately 36,500 drinks.

"Importantly, because drink sales were maintained, the change in buyer behaviour was financially viable and sustainable for the retailers."

Deakin University, Monash University, VicHealth and the Behavioural Insights Team (UK) all played a role in these trials.

More information on the trials can be found here.

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