Fizzy drinks, cereals and confectionery are obvious whipping boys for the health lobby. But yoghurts, particularly aimed at babies and kids, are also under fire from health campaigners.

You can understand why when you look at the sugar content of many kids yoghurts - low-fat and salt products that otherwise tick all the right health boxes. The fact many brand owners add extra sugar to products already rich in natural, fruit-derived sugar is particularly contentious.

In a survey by The Grocer of 16 products aimed at kids and babies, just three were found to contain no added sugar. And just two products - Plum Baby Organic Fromage Frais and Sainsbury’s Kids Fromage Frais - would win green status if they were to sign up to the government’s new front-of-pack labelling scheme, launched last July, while 13 products would be amber and one, Müller Corner Kids Hearts (see above), would be red.

That could be about to change. Action on Sugar says the Department of Health should set new targets to bring down the amount of added sugar in food and drink by up to 30% within three to five years.

The initial reaction from the Provision Trade Federation suggests its members - including leading kids yoghurt manufacturers Müller Wiseman, Danone, Nestlé and Yoplait - would not be averse to such a move.

“Targets have proved effective in reducing levels of salt in food products and so this is something we are going to discuss when it comes to sugar and whether it could work on that too in a similar way,” says PTF director general Clare Cheney.

Insiders say that a target of a cut in added sugar of 20% to 30% is potentially workable. Others say the health lobby could ramp up the pressure on yoghurts, particularly those aimed at children, if proactive action was not seen to be taken.

“Because yoghurts are otherwise beneficial, the sugar level can make people criticise them and regard yoghurts as less healthy,” says Cheney. “That’s why we’ll be discussing this issue to see if more can be done.”

Tesco’s reformulation of its Healthy Living Beautifully Balanced yoghurt range earlier this month gives one suggestion of what could be done. The retailer has replaced all added sugar in the range with stevia, cutting its sugar content by an impressive 45%.

Seeing red? Kids yoghurt sugar culprits

Müller Corner Kids Hearts Yoghurt

Calories per 100g :153

Sugar per pot (135g):24.8

Traffic light RED

Cow & Gate 7 mth+ strawberry yogurt

Calories per 100g :82

Sugar per pot (200g):21.2

Traffic light AMBER

Petits Filous strawberry & r’berry fromage frais

Calories per 100g :96

Sugar per pot (100g):12.2

Traffic light AMBER

Tesco Mr Men strawberry & apricot fromage frais

Calories per 100g:110

Sugar per pot (100g):11.8

Traffic light AMBER

Munch Bunch Double Up strawberry & vanilla

Calories per 100g:107

Sugar per pot (85g):11.7

Traffic light AMBER

Heinz Dessert Pots Fruity Banana Yoghurt

Calories per 100g:76

Sugar per pot (100g):10.3

Traffic light AMBER