A few years ago, several grave existential threats to our great nation were identified.
Not in any particular order, the scourges darkening our door and casting a potential long shadow over our way of life are as follows: transborder terrorism, dengue, not having enough babies and diabetes.
As the Snacktivist, you may think that every one of the above issues, save for the last one are outside my wheelhouse. But I’ll have you know I’m a polymath, as knowledgeable in national security/pest control/socio-political discourse as your average “give me back my CPF” Boomer.
It’s dead easy, right? Now write this down, this is the collected wisdom of the Snacktivist. And to think there are actually university courses for things like public policy.
Lul. Biggest scam ever, amirite.
Transborder terrorism: Just download the SGSecure app. Easy.
Falling birth rates: Just make spaces less small and reduce the levies/salaries/days off on foreign domestic help so we can all have two or more
slaves nannies. Wow, this national policy stuff is dead simple. Next!
Dengue: Do the Mozzie Clap, of course. Duh.
But the last one poses a slightly bigger problem for the Snacktivist, a task so big and onerous, even I will not take it up.
Milo, however, is up to the challenge of tackling diabetes. More than up to it, in fact.
In addition to Milo Gao Kosong (which was formulated in Singapore, MAJULAH!), it has Milo Gao Siew Dai, but what the masses have been clamouring for is reduced-sugar formulations to be available in pre-mixed packs.
Up until now, that is. Nestle has answered the prayers of the huddled masses and have introduced Milo Reduced Sugar in cute 200ml packs. It touts half the sugar and twice the calcium of regular Milo-in-a-pack.
Yes, that’s what it’s called, with a less-than-catchy and clunky Anglicised name instead of the ever-so-hip one sporting localised kopitiam slang, more’s the pity.
Missed opportunity there, Nestle. Missed opportunity.
Still, I had to try it out, much as I think reduced-sugar versions of anything is an abomination. But you know my motto by now: for the glory of science, for the glory of the Snackdown.
Making the choice to get Milo Reduced Sugar was a fairly easy decision, then. But what to get as a Milo control sample was a bit more difficult, given how there’s eleventy billion varieties out there.
Regular? Pre-mixed sachets? Pre-mixed packs? Pre-mixed in PET bottles? And that’s not even including the foreign varieties. The Australian ones are best, according to anecdotal evidence from every auntie out there.
The smartest, most scientific choice would be to get everything out there. Because an incomplete scientific study is no scientific study at all.
But since there’s only me doing it (but job, but somebody’s gotta), I figured a complete study of every Milo variety under the sun would see me dead of fatal Milo poisoning.
Which, come to think of it, wouldn’t be a bad way to go. I always wanted to go out as Patient Zero, a celebrity immortalised in medical journals for generations to come. I can think of worse ways to die, honestly.
Sadly, I had to choose one, and naturally, it was a choice arrived at after reasoned internal debate. I most certainly did not grab the nearest Milo to me after a mild panic attack from having so many choices laid before me. No, sir.
As it transpired, the control Milo would be Milo Van Milo Peng. A tongue-twister of a name and one that arguably has the most convoluted name on the Milo family tree, which is also incredibly convoluted.
Milo Van Milo Peng is Milo to evoke nostalgia. To bring back the happy memories of the Milo van coming around to your school and handing out tiny paper cups with equally tiny amounts of Milo in it. To recall times of playground bullies, of being picked last for teams during every PE session, of being friendzoned by your crush at age nine…
OH GOD, DON’T BRING ME BACK THERE.
Of course, you’ll understand that never happened to me. That was merely there for dramatic effect.
So, about this Milo Reduced Sugar, then. I’m not entirely sure I’m a fan, and it’s not just about the fact it isn’t as sweet.
Small aside, and a little known fact about the Snacktivist: I will gladly demolish an entire pack of candy in one sitting, but I don’t usually have sweetened drinks. I don’t even like soda all that much, for some reason.
What I’m trying to get at is the fact that Milo Reduced Sugar isn’t as sweet is not its biggest failing. It’s that it feels they really skimped on the Milo bit. It’s thin, not very creamy and not very satisfying.
Nudge nudge, wink wink.
The Milo in a PET bottle, however.
It’s the richest, creamiest Milo this side of a Milo Dinosaur. Why it hasn’t been summarily yanked from the shelves and executed for high treason is a mystery to me. Not that it’s cloyingly sweet, though, not in the bubble tea with 100 percent sugar level kinda way.
So, in summary: Milo Reduced Sugar bad; Milo Van Milo Peng good.
But, why couldn’t you have told us this from the get-go, Snacktivist?
Why did you have to spend several hundred words to get to a point you could have made in less than 50?
For the simple reason I like the sound of my own voice, but mostly because the powers that be (that is to say, the people who keep me in food and rent) don’t take too kindly to stories that say “X good, Y bad”.
10-word review: Milo Reduced Sugar, O flavour, where have thou gone to?
Best paired with: A heaping spoonful more Milo, for starters.