Reformulation Working Group

Page last updated: 07 February 2018

The Reformulation Working Group will establish priorities for food reformulation which may help consumers achieve dietary patterns that are consistent with the Australian Dietary Guidelines (ADGs) and protect and promote good health.

Key activities of the Reformulation Working Group will be to:

  • Assess which nutrients, foods and categories should be included within a reformulation program to support achievement of the ADGs, and determine how these are to be prioritised
  • Examine reformulation work to date in the Australian marketplace and international initiatives, including evidence for effectiveness where available
  • Set measurable targets for reformulation which would apply to manufactured foods sold through retail and food service
  • Set targets/guidelines for foods prepared on site (in food service)


  • Vanessa Clarkson (Chair)
  • Fritz Meyer (Co-chair)
  • Trish Guy
  • Anne-Marie Mackintosh
  • Jacqui Webster
  • Michael Depalo
  • Julie-Anne McWhinnie
  • Clare Bleys
  • Xenia Cleanthous
  • Anita Lawrence

Work plan

PDF version: Work Plan for Reformulation Working Group (PDF 136 KB)
Word version: Work Plan for Reformulation Working Group (Word 39 KB)

Updates from the Reformulation Working Group

8 December 2017

The Reformulation Working Group is progressing well with the work plan and has been focusing its efforts on developing a document that provides a rationale for reformulation (and the actions of the group).  This document will, among other things:

  • Situate the reformulation program in the context of the broader Partnership Program – noting that other Partnership working groups are considering actions that enable and encourage Australians to achieve the Australian Dietary Guidelines; and
  • Provide rationale for a reformulation program, including data on health outcomes and the cost effectiveness of it as a public health intervention

The working group is also determining targets for the identified categories and nutrients based on the results of the Australian Health Survey and will undertake modelling to determine the potential impact of targets.
Upon completion of the modelling in the first quarter of 2018 and noting that reformulation timeframes and milestones may vary between categories and nutrients, food industry will be consulted on the draft targets.

19 May 2017

The Reformulation Working Group (RWG) has met on a number of occasions and is making good progress against the activities in its work plan. The current priority for the working group is the collation and analysis of data to inform a decision about which food categories and nutrients to target for reformulation.

The RWG is looking to consumption data from the Australian Health Survey and information contained within the Australian Dietary Guidelines, the Nutrient Reference Values and the Australian Burden of Disease Study. This combination of information will assist the group to determine where to focus action in order to have the greatest impact. The RWG is also considering the role that Health Star Ratings may play in assisting reformulation, as well as reviewing international reformulation programs.

Sodium, saturated fat and added sugars will be prioritised for reformulation targets in the first instance. The determination of targets will include modelling to ensure that all proposed targets will have meaningful impacts on population consumption of targeted nutrients.

The working group will meet again in June and will continue to progress activities in the interim.