Eleven of the world’s largest food and beverage companies, including Kellogg, Mars, Nestlé and Unilever, have pledged to phase out industrially-produced trans fat by the end of 2018.

The members of the International Food & Beverage Alliance (IFBA) said they had agreed a common global objective to reduce trans fatty acids (TFAs) in their products to nutritionally insignificant levels (less than 1 gram of trans fat per 100 grams of product) worldwide by the end of 2018 at the latest.

“Building on the significant individual progress made to date and aiming to minimise intake of industrially-produced TFAs, IFBA members have been voluntarily reformulating their products for more than a decade to remove partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs) – the major source of trans fat in processed foods – and increase the use of healthier fats, such as mono- or poly-unsaturated fatty acids,” the IFBA said in a press release. “To help consumers make informed dietary choices, IFBA members have also been listing trans fat content on nutrition labels.”

It said the World Health Organization’s Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Noncommunicable Diseases, 2013-2020 called on member states to implement policies to replace industrially produced TFAs with unsaturated fats. “IFBA’s new commitment reflects its support for this recommendation.”

As well as Kellogg, Mars, Nestlé and Unilever, other members of the IFBA are the Coca-Cola Company, Ferrero, General Mills, Grupo Bimbo, McDonald’s, Mondelēz International and PepsiCo.