Coca Cola sugar

Coca-Cola has launched a major new advertising drive to highlight the removal of sugar from its products amid attacks from the health lobby spearheaded by chef Jamie Oliver.

The soft drinks giant has taken out several pages of advertising in leading newspapers, including The Sunday Telegraph and The Sunday Times in the past week, stressing the work it has done to create and market lower and zero-calorie drinks.

The ads spell out how Coca-Cola has been instrumental in removing the amount of sugar taken into UK households by more than 8% in the past three years. It also highlights the 27 new lower or zero-sugar products it has launched since 2005.

The ads also stress Coke’s sign-up to the DH’s front-of-pack nutrition labelling scheme.

The campaign comes amid the ongoing war on sugar by health groups, with Oliver focusing on the brand and its alleged impact on childhood obesity and dental health in his recent Channel 4 documentary Jamie’s Sugar Rush.

“The advertising highlights the work we have been doing to offer people a greater choice of lower and no-sugar drinks, the investment we make in local community projects and our credentials as a British business,” said a spokeswoman.

As well as the health issue, the ads talk about how Coke supports more than 34,500 British jobs and makes a £2.4bn contribution to the economy.

In March, Coke unveiled a radical marketing shake-up that has brought its four sub-brands - Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Coca-Cola Zero and Coca-Cola Life - under a single umbrella brand. Previously, the four ranges had been treated individually but will now be marketed as variants of a single Coca-Cola brand.