WATCH: Reformulation in focus — can industry fight the region's health battles head-on?

This content item was originally published on, a William Reed online publication.

By Lester Wan & Gary Scattergood

- Last updated on GMT

APAC's well-documented battle with obesity and diabetes is putting ever-greater pressure on manufacturers to reformulate to improve health outcomes, but what more can be done to encourage consumers, industry and policymakers to make changes for the better?

This is the focus of our latest Asia’s Food Future video series where we speak to two experts at the reformulation coalface — assistant dean at the National University of Singapore, Dr Liu Mei Hui and Asia Pacific MD at Beneo, Christian Philippsen.

In the video, we ask them both to outline what their organisation’s current reformulation research priorities are and assess what impact they could have in improving public health.

They also debate what more academics and ingredient suppliers can do to persuade more manufacturers to take up the reformulation challenge, and discuss if there is enough alignment between industry, academia and policymakers in tackling the region’s significant health challenges.

According to the UN, the number of overweight children under five rose by 38% from 2000 to 2016 in the region. It is well understood that overweight children are more likely to become obese adults and develop conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.

The organisation recently reported that Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand are among the most overweight countries in South East Asia, while Samoa, Tonga and Nauru are the most overweight in the Pacific. Australia also has high rates of obesity.

Take a look at our video to find out what role reformulation can play to meet these challenges head-on.

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