Progress on nutrition platform pleases Dunkin’ Brands

by Eric Schroeder
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CANTON, MASS. — It has been two years since Dunkin’ Brands published its first corporate social responsibility report, and in that time frame the Canton-based company has made headway on a range of short- and long-term nutrition goals.

In its second C.S.R. report released June 12, titled “Focused on sustainable solutions,” Dunkin’ said it has completed four of the five initial nutrition goals it set out to achieve in 2010. The four goals that have been completed are:

• Review current menu portfolios and identify nutritional gaps and new product opportunities by 2013;
• Establish nutrition filter and goals;
• Revise web site to include nutrition content by 2013;
• Review and explore Dunkin’ Brands advertising practices that may reach younger audiences to encourage balanced lifestyle options.

The fifth goal — to continue to look for ways to incorporate better-for-you choice options on Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins menus — is considered “in progress/ongoing.”

Commenting on its nutrition progress over the past several years, Dunkin’ Brands said it has collaborated with its Nutrition Advisory Board to continually review its menu for opportunities to improve the nutritional profile of products. The board was formed in 2007 to provide input on issues such as menu labeling and the development of better-for-you products.

“By revising our portion sizes, we have reduced total calories for all Baskin-Robbins beverages and 31 Below Mix-Ins, and for all Dunkin’ Donuts bagels, muffins and cookies,” the company noted in the report. “As part of our nutrition filter we have also established calorie guidelines for our limited-time offer muffin and donut varieties.”

Dunkin’ Brands said it also has updated its web site, www.dunkindonuts.com, to include expanded on-line menu categories, content and tools to make it easier to locate nutrition information. Nutrition information also now is available at www.baskinrobbins.com. Both web sites include a downloadable PDF version of the company’s nutrition guide.

Noting that it always is looking for ways to meet the needs of its guests, Dunkin’ Brands in the report identified three nutrition goals for 2013-14. The first goal is to launch a gluten-free donut and a gluten-free muffin as an optional program nationwide by the end of 2013. The company in January confirmed it was test marketing gluten-free products at a few select restaurants in the Boston and Miami areas.

“We understand that sensitivities to food ingredients such as gluten are a serious concern for certain guests,” Dunkin’ Brands said.

A second goal is to introduce a minimum of two BR Flavor the Month flavors and four prepack features in 2013 and 2014 that meet BRight Choices. BRight Choices have between 80 and 140 calories per 2.5-oz scoop. For the company’s premium churned line, BRight Choices products must have 50% less fat compared with the company’s regular ice cream, while premium churned reduced fat no sugar added ice cream must have 25% less fat than regular ice cream to qualify for the BRight Choices tag. To qualify for the BRight Choices tag, Baskin-Robbins sorbet/ice must be fat free/dairy free, and frozen yogurt must be made with live and active cultures.

Finally, Dunkin’ said it plans to reduce sodium by 10% across the entire Dunkin’ Donuts menu by the end of 2015.

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