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Tony’s Chocolonely wants you to eat less of it


By Hannah Bowler | Journalist

January 17, 2022 | 3 min read

Confectionery company Tony’s Chocolonely is to market moderation, urging the rest of the chocolate industry to do same.

Tony’s Chocolonely plans to use its packaging to promote moderation, with the Dutch chocolate brand openly admitting that it is part of the problem when it comes to sugar and unhealthy eating habits, saying it will incorporate this messaging into its future marketing.

Tony's Chocolonely adapts packaging and ad campaigns to warn about sugar consumption

Tony’s Chocolonely is to adapt its packaging and ad campaigns to warn about sugar consumption

“When it comes to sugar, all choco brands (ourselves included), be they big or small, need to jump on the educator bandwagon,” wrote the company in a recent blog post, while its chief marketing officer Jo Lane tells The Drum: “We must start by emphasizing that confronting the elephant in the room is the first step to communicating and mitigating the risks of sugar overconsumption amongst choco fans.”

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Lane says that, instead of selling more chocolate to existing customers, the brand will encourage consumers to eat less of it, adding that Tony’s “wants to underline that overconsumption of chocolate can be bad for health”.

“While selling more cocoa beans is a win for our impact, eating too much of it is bad for your health.“

One approach under review, says Lane, is to change its labels to say ”X squares = 1 portion” – something she says it is easy for other chocolate brands to copy. Her marketing team is currently exploring other options to moderate consumption, which she admits “requires careful consideration and is still a work in progress”.

​ Tony Tony's Chocolonely adapts packaging and ad campaigns to warn about sugar consumption ​

Tony’s is also publicly supporting the sugar tax campaign in the Netherlands. The country is in the process of reviewing a tax on sugary drinks, but Tony’s has publicly said its plans are “still far too vague”.

“We aren’t going to shy away from speaking up about this topic,” says Lane. “Our hope is that by speaking out on important matters, no matter how uncomfortable they are, we drive awareness and change for the better.”

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