• The latest pladis Annual Biscuit Review reveals biscuits are booming – up by £66 million (+2.5%) in the last year – as the category touches £2.7 billion
  • The review reinforces the further £264 million sales opportunity that could take it to £3 billion mark by 2022 – and more advice on how to achieve it

pladis, the UK’s number one biscuit manufacturer and the company behind well-loved brands such as McVitie’s, go ahead! and Flipz has launched its 2019 Annual Biscuit Review, urging retailers to go back to basics with biscuits and drive sustained growth by optimising their ranges and getting the core right.

Almost a year after pladis revealed a three-year opportunity for biscuits worth £330 million, the latest Annual Biscuit Review demonstrates that retailers and suppliers have successfully unlocked £66 million of sales growth – leaving £264 million left for retailers to take a bite out of over the next two to three years.

“According to our latest Annual Biscuit Review, biscuits are now worth £2.69 billion and growing,” explains Scott Snell, Vice President of Customer at pladis UK & Ireland. “This shows retailers are successfully tapping into the changing shopper eating patterns we predicted would propel growth back in 2019.

“As ever, this year’s Review will be an invaluable resource for retailers, wholesalers and foodservice operators as we work together to unlock the huge £264 million opportunity that remains to be seized over the next couple of years.”


The launch of this year’s report comes as retailers large and small have been rocked by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Shopping behaviour has drastically evolved in the past three months,” says Snell. “First of all, we experienced an extraordinary surge in demand from shoppers stocking up on their favourite products. This was followed by a change in the size and frequency of consumer shops as lockdown measures were enforced in the UK.

“It’s likely that the coronavirus pandemic will affect both the way we shop and the products and formats we favour for the foreseeable future. That’s why this year’s Review is more important than ever. It will provide the clear guidance required to help all retailers make the most of the opportunity this crucial category represents amidst challenging and uncertain circumstances.” 


Responsible for delivering more than two-thirds of category growth in 2019, core products such as McVitie’s Jaffa Cakes and McVitie’s Chocolate Digestives continue to be crucial to the category’s success.

What’s more, in 2019 combined growth of the Top 10 core biscuit brands (+3.4%) equated to £422 million worth of sales and represented 21% of total category growth, showing focus on the core fixture should be a top priority for retailers.

“The importance of core products to the biscuit category should never be underestimated,” continues Snell. “Last year was a strong year for McVitie’s – fittingly our 180th anniversary – and a huge contributor to this success was our tight focus on the best-loved products in our range.

“By carefully accommodating the needs of many of our customers and helping them to optimise pack formats across their stores, we were better able to give shoppers what they were looking for and drive growth by +1.2%. This demonstrates just how vital it is for retailers to get the range right.”

In the convenience channel, 80% of biscuits sales come from only 8% of products. Using data gathered in more than seven separate in-store trials run in 2019, this year’s Review provides insight on the merchandising principles, promotional strategies and product selection that will help retailers win with biscuits.

It also reveals that by optimising their core range of products and following the ‘Better Biscuits’ merchandising principles, convenience store owners could see their biscuit sales jumping by almost 30%. 


To request a copy of pladis’ 2019 Annual Biscuit Review, email Charlotte.Cosgrove@pladisglobal.com 

All data Kantar Worldpanel 52 w/e 29 Dec 2019

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