Australian consumer watchdog Choice has hit out at the nutritional claims carried on an array of products in the fast-growing breakfast drink category.

“Consumers shouldn’t be fooled into thinking liquid breakfasts are high in fibre or a good source of protein,” Choice spokesperson Tom Godfrey insisted. “Shonky claims on liquid breakfasts such as ‘high in fibre’, ‘fibre for digestive health’, and ‘goodness of three grains’ is a cause for concern.”

Choice conducted a study of 23 liquid breakfast products, including Sanitarium’s Up & Go, Devondale Fast Start, Kellogg‘s breakfast drinks, Vitasoy Vitago, Dairy Farmers Oats Express and Aldi Goldenvale Quick Start.

On average, the consumer watchdog found liquid breakfasts contain just 1.5% fibre. This, Choice said, is “well below the 10% benchmark” for “high fibre” foods.

Choice also highlighted that many liquidation breakfast drinks are high in sugar.

“Ten of the 23 products investigated have more than 23g of sugar per serve – roughly the same as a chocolate bar. This is particularly concerning for parents who often resort to these drinks as a quick alternative breakfast for their kids,” Godfrey insisted.

Breakfast drinks are a category that has seen considerable growth in Australia. The sector is now expanding rapidly in other markets, such as the US and UK, as consumers seek out convenient breakfast alternatives. For just-food’s four-part analysis of the changing nature of the global breakfast category, click here.