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Kraft Backs Off on Plan to Reduce Package Sizes

NORTHFIELD, Ill. - Kraft Foods, Inc. has abandoned its plan to reduce some portion sizes, saying consumer research shows shoppers prefer to have the choice of whether to go with smaller packages.

According to reports, Kraft disclosed the decision in a progress report on the anti-obesity initiatives it announced last July. With the food industry facing growing consumer health concerns and the risk of obesity lawsuits, Kraft had pledged to change some product recipes, reduce portions in some single-serve packages, quit marketing snacks via giveaways at schools, and encourage healthier lifestyles.

"When we spoke with consumers about what they wanted with single-serve, what they told us was that they didn't want us to reduce the size because they wanted to have more choice," Kraft spokeswoman Kris Charles said yesterday. "Different people have different body sizes and activity levels, and it made more sense to provide different portion choices."

Kraft said is still planning to offer a broad range of portion-size choices, including snacks in small packages, such as its new Nabisco 100 Calorie Packs. It also will give nutrition information for entire packages, rather than just for individual portions, to make it easier for consumers to make nutritional decisions.

That move, Kraft said, should support the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's recent call for food companies to enhance labeling on packages in a way that helps consumers make informed decisions.

Kraft has also reduced the fat content and made other changes to about 200 products it sells in North America, accounting for about 5 percent of its products.
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