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Last Updated: Thursday, 29 July, 2004, 12:28 GMT 13:28 UK
Low-calorie boost for Starbucks
Starbucks Frappuccino
The Frappucino is a firm favourite with Starbucks customers
Coffee chain Starbucks has reaped a sales boost from a new low-calorie version of its Frappuccino iced drinks.

The company said revenues in cafes open at least a year climbed 10% in the four weeks to 25 July, while total sales rose 27% on the year to $409m (220m).

The increase reflects the impact of the new Frappuccino, introduced in June.

Starbucks is the latest in a long line of food companies to offer reduced-calorie versions of established consumer favourites.

Rapid response

The trend is seen as a response to popular weight-loss programmes such as the Atkins diet, whose adherents cut out carbohydrates in favour of extra protein.

The new dieting craze took the food industry by surprise, and many companies have hastily adapted their product range in an effort to reverse a sudden decline in sales.

In the US, Heinz has launched a low-carbohydrate version of its iconic ketchup tomato sauce, restaurant chain TGI Friday's is offering an Atkins-friendly menu, and Kraft Foods - the biggest US food manufacturer of all - is also developing low-carb products.

Starbucks' says its 'light' Frappuccino, which is made with low-calorie sweeteners instead of sugar, contains between 30% and 40% fewer calories than the original version.

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