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Posted: Monday, 21 February 2022 23:30


Blog: Misleading info about Sugar Content in Wines by BBC

Feb 21: A recent Article in BBC, inferring and claiming ‘Analysis of more than 30 bottles of wine has found two glasses could be enough to reach the recommended daily sugar limit for adults’, seems to be preposterous, says Subhash Arora who finds it more of a plug for the Alcohol Health Alliance UK which ‘conducted’ the Research that found some bottles had up to 59g of sugar, though he feels that information on sugar content and calories could be given on the label, even though it would make the labelling more complex

Blog: Misleading info about Sugar Content in Wines by BBCAn independent laboratory analysed a mixed batch of 30 bottles of red, white, rosé, fruit and sparkling wine from popular UK brands. None of the bottles featured nutritional information on labels (not required by law globally), whereas the Calorie content was displayed only on about 20% of the samples tested. Many consumers are hankering for a change to inform wine drinkers about how many calories and how much sugar they are consuming.

The NHS recommends that adults consume a maximum of 30g of "free sugars" per day, which includes sugar in fruit juices and smoothies, or sugar added to food or drink. Analysis claims that it's possible to reach an adult's daily sugar limit by drinking even two medium-sized glasses of some wines.

Here are a few of the Top Comments made by the discerning readers of BBC on the Article:

“Most bottles of wine have around a teaspoon of sugar (4 gms). This anti-alcohol group has just picked on a sweet wine to create a ridiculous, disingenuous comparison to a doughnut. The only lesson to be learnt from the "Alcohol Health Alliance" is if you want to avoid too much sugar in wine, make sure you go for the higher alcohol content”-Fred

“Absolute twaddle. This survey included sweet wine, medium sweet rose wines & fruit wines. Standard dry whites & red wines have less than 5 grams per Litre of sugar. Most calories in dry wine or red wine come from carbohydrates from the alcohol. This is completely misleading. Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Malbec, Merlot, Shiraz etc don't contain much sugar - less than 1/2 a teaspoon per 75cl” -Grand Master T.

“This article is ridiculous as when they say 'some wines' they mean sweet wine - how many people drink that? A dry white - much more popular, has almost no sugar”- Pedro321

The BBC Article fails to note that most of the wines consumed today are dry wines with the sugar content of 0-2 gms/liter. Here are 5 of the wines in the sample of 30 with the sugar content (gms) in a 750 mL bottle:

Barefoot Bubbly Pink Moscato





Barefoot Pink Moscato Rosé wine





Echo Falls Fruit Fusion Summer Berries (9%)

Fruit wine





Echo Falls Summer Berries Sparkling wine





Echo Falls Fruit Fusion Summer Berries (5.5%)

Fruit wine




They do not talk about the dry red wines which are by definition 0-5 gms/LITER of sugar and most of high quality wines have barely 1-2 gms of residual sugar/liter!  (Residual sugar is the amount that can be found in a bottle when all the liquid contents are removed and only solids are left. A glass of coke (about 150 mL) will have around 16 gms sugar- the 12 oz. cans have 39 gms of sugar whereas a chocolate glazed donut has about 13-30 gms of sugar; even Starbucks Caffe Latte has about 17 gms. sugar.

Similarly, the wine is being projected as a high-calorie product in the Study. The sample taken in the AHK UK site indicates wines having about 113-120 calories per standard glass of 150 mL (If you check out their website, you will notice that the standard medium glass has been taken as 175 mL whereas in most places around the world it is 150 mL (delWine has always proposed a 125 mL glass as a standard glass –unfortunately, we failed to convince the restaurants and the consumers- this would have meant cheaper wine per glass and less alcohol and calories going into the system.)

To put things in proper perspective a cheese whopper from Burger King has 740 calories, a Medium serving of French fries at McDonald has 330 calories. Even the harmless looking samosa had 262 calories! What makes you gain weight, if you do not watch out, is the food and snacks you have with the wines you drink.

So don’t blame the wine for too much sugar or too many calories that make you put on weight. A healthy meal would contain no more than 2 glasses of red wine- white wines tend to have more sugar, lesser alcohol and fewer calories. We recommend dry red wines and with alcohol level less than 14%-and can assure our readers that sugar would never be a problem- not will the calories be! A bit of self- education will help you in India. And you don't have to blindly trust BBC and certainly not the Alcohol Alliance UK.

Subhash Arora

delWine continues to recommend 2 glasses (125 mL) of wine, preferably red wine and with meal for men and one glass for women-editor



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Paul Wagner Says:


Excellent Post. You've summarized this issue very nicely. As someone who has taught wine classes at Napa Valley College for the past three decades, it's good to see such a fact-based analysis of the kind of nonsense that sometimes appears in the news! Paul Wagner McPherson Distinguished Teacher Napa Valley College

Posted @ February 23, 2022 23:23


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