Debra Sandler is calling on candy makers to be proactive in tackling obesity. According to Confectionary News (yup, real thing), the Mars Chocolate North America president, spoke at the National Confectioners Association’s (NCA) State of the Industry Conference in Miami and urged manufacturers to be a part of the solution, not the problem. “If we don’t [act], I worry that someone else will do it for us … Don’t wait for regulators to tell us what to do,” she said, citing candy taxes and public criticism for celebrities who speak on behalf of unhealthy food and drink.
While this doesn’t sound entirely, um, selfless, I care less about Sandler’s motives and more about the end result and how it could affect the issue of obesity. So what does the Mars prez plan on doing? Firstly, she wants manufacturers to display the candy’s calorie count on the front of all packs, to which I say, hell yeah. Sandler also wants them to refine their products for better nutritional content (“Why not lower saturated fats if you can do that without affecting the taste?” she says), and give consumers a greater choice. All good things.
Of course, it’s silly to think that unilateral efforts—even if they apply to one entire segment of the junk-food industry—will make a significant dent in our obesity problem. But it’s definitely a move in the right direction. And I think that’s something we can all get behind.