Sugar products over the last 15 years : less sugar but more processed foods
Over the last 15 years households have gradually increased the amount spent on sugar products, even though these products account for a smaller proportion of their overall food shopping. This shift can be explained by an increase in the consumption of processed foods. Household purchases now include more chocolate-based food and confectionary. The opposite applies for sugar (both in cube and standard form), where the downward trend can partly be traced to a fall in home baking. Purchases of sugar products in France as a proportion of household spending closely match the European average. Ireland and Spain consume the fewest sugar products, whilst the Baltic States and Poland top the list for sugar consumption. Sugar products accounted for just 36% of all simple carbohydrates in everyday diets in France in 2004, compared with 42% in 1990. Other products, such as soft drinks, cordials, fruit juice and nectars, which have seen significant development during this period, account for the remaining simple carbohydrates.