Dusty, white, dangerous and mountainous in quantity, sugar is to the fizzy drink industry what cocaine is to Tony Montana’s office.
Last year, the UK managed to chug a whopping 14.8 billion litres of fizzy drinks, slowly reducing teeth to gummy stumps while lining the pockets of soft drink manufacturers –which may be set to change…
As part of the government’s looming sugar tax, which will see a levy on soft drinks with more than 5g of sugar per 100ml, the biggest offenders have been revealed and we’ll be honest the most sugartastic actually quite surprised us.
But before you go off and call your mum to tell her she was right all along, cast your eye over this count down of wrongdoers.
16. Lucozade Energy Original – 8.7g of sugar per 100ml
15. San Pellegrino Lemon – 8.9g of sugar per 100ml
14. Vimto Regular – 9.1g of sugar per 100ml
13. Cherry 7-Up – 10.0g of sugar per 100ml
12. Irn Bru – 10.3 of sugar per 100ml
11. Fentiman’s Cherrytree Cola – 10.5g of sugar per 100ml
9. 7-Up – 11.0g of sugar per 100ml
8. Red Bull – 11.0g of sugar per 100ml
7. Monster Origin Energy Drink – 11.0g of sugar per 100ml
6. Pepsi Cola – 11.0g of sugar per 100ml
5. Coke Cherry – 11.2g of sugar per 100ml
4. Mountain Dew – 13.0g of sugar per 100ml
3. Old Jamaica Ginger Beer – 15.2g of sugar per 100ml
2. Rockstar Punched Guava – 15.6g of sugar per 100ml
1. Old Jamaica Ginger Beer Extra Fiery – 15.7g of sugar per 100ml
Topping a list filled with the usual suspects, your Monsters, your Red Bulls your Lucozades, we have to admit we were fairly shocked to see Jamaica Ginger Beer take first place.
Normally known as the most innocent beer of them all, its Extra Fiery drink contains 15.7g (just under four teaspoons of sugar per 100ml), which at 330ml is well over the recommended daily sugar intake of 30g a day, or 7.5 teaspoons.
Speaking to The BBC about Old Jamaica’s high sugar content, Ian Macdonald, professor of metabolic physiology at Nottingham University said: “It may be that the ginger, which is fiery, tastes a bit bitter to many people,” he says. “In order to get the same sweetness level as you see in a cola or lemonade, you may need to add more sugar.”
Which sort of explains it. But also sort of doesn’t.