General Mills' international cereal venture with Nestle is to cut sugar levels in products advertised to children by an average of 20%, a move announced alongside the US food giant's domestic moves on sugar.

Cereal Partners Worldwide, under which the two companies sell cereals in 130 markets, said the reduction would come from "existing technologies", as well as "advances" developed by a new innovation centre scheduled to get up and running next year.

Christi Strauss, president and CEO of the venture, said cutting sugar without "sacrificing" taste was a "challenge".

However, she added: "Our joint venture has developed capabilities that are second to none in the food business. We can leverage these breakthroughs. It will require technology, time and substantial levels of ongoing investment, but we are committed to this initiative."

General Mills yesterday (9 December) announced its own commitment for the US market. The company said it would it would reduce the levels of sugar to "single-digit grams per serving".

"We believe consumers will respond positively to this initiative, and to our changes. We listen to our consumers, and we know that some would prefer to see even lower levels of sugar in cereals, especially children's cereals," a spokesperson told just-food.