Costa To Reduce Added Sugar Across Beverage Range By 25%; Appoints New UK MD

The Costa coffee shop chain has announced that it will reduce added sugar across its beverage portfolio by 25% by 2020, against a January 2015 benchmark. The company said the announcement, which coincides with the launch of its new Summer drinks menu, was part of its broader commitment to introduce healthier choices for its customers.

Jane Treasure, Head of Food and Beverage Development at Costa said: “Costa always puts customers at the heart of everything we do. We’re committed to providing great tasting choices and have a long-term plan to improve the nutritional balance of our menu”.

As part of this approach Costa has introduced a number of changes to its summer drinks menu, which launched last week. This includes the nationwide rollout of no added sugar SuperDay Smoothies, constituting one of the recommended five portions of fruit and vegetables a day.

Alongside this, Costa has introduced a number of healthier menu items. This includes not only the nationwide rollout of SuperDay Smoothies but also the introduction of low-calorie and gluten free alternatives, trials of healthy pots and a further trial roll out of Chop’d salads. Costa also publishes the nutritional information on-shelf and on-counter for food products.

Treasure added: “We already have a number of products tailored to a range of nutritional and dietary needs and have proactively removed a substantial amount of sugar across our beverage portfolio. Our added sugar reduction commitment is part of a strategy to manage our entire portfolio responsibly to ensure that we provide a nutritionally balanced mix of menu items for our customers”.

To support in meeting its target Costa has worked with an independent, external expert and created a nutritional calculator which allows the brand to assess its food and beverage products. Using this methodology Costa will review each product recipe, against a set pre-determined criteria to determine whether to delist, reformulate or provide an alternative choice for customers.

Meanwhile, the chain has announced the appointment of Jason Cotta as Managing Director for the UK & Ireland. He has previously worked as Operations Director, International and Development for Travelodge and Operations Project Director for Care UK. He was also Operations Manager for TGI Fridays.

He joined Costa in 2010 and spent two years as Operations Director for Costa UK Equity stores and two years as Managing Director for Costa Retail from 2013. In 2015 he took responsibility for the Costa EMEA business, with accountability for Costa businesses in Poland and Latvia, France and Singapore as well as Costa’s International Franchise operations.

Commenting on the appointment Christopher Rogers, CEO of Costa said: “In his new role Jason will be looking to capitalise on UK opportunities for growth, building the brand and delivering for our customers. Jason has delivered outstanding results in his previous roles at Costa and brings with him a wealth of relevant experience to support the UK business at this important stage in its development”.

The appointment takes place with immediate effect.